“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”~ThomasEdison~
When a beloved family friend died of pancreatic cancer, brilliant teen Jack Andraka set out on a mission. to find an early stage detection for pancreatic cancer. Finding out too late is why so many pancreatic cancer patients don’t make it five years past diagnosis. And outdated testing measures lead towards testing too late. Those outdated tests use technology from when Elvis Presley was topping the charts. After find finding out what the heck a pancreas was, he set out to find a quick and inexpensive test-this one is 168 times faster, 1/26,667 of the price, and 400 times more sensitive than current tests.
The months to produce the first success, not to mention the preceding months of trying to find a laboratory show how perseverant he is. “There was absolutely no way my mom was going to allow me to do cancer research on my kitchen countertop or even in my basement…I needed to be in a real laboratory.” he later said. 199 rejection letters later, Dr. Anirban Maitra of Johns Hopkins in Baltimore replied with a letter that effectively said “yes, but let’s see if you have the blanks filled in”. Due to past experience, he already had them filled in. A couple of dud experiments later, the scientific instruments start spouting out readings, the ones that say “this works” in caps lock. He went on the meet the president (for two minutes, which is two minutes more than us) and give speeches at science contests and conferences.
He also wrote a good book entitled Breakthrough in collaboration with Matthew Lysiak which is both inspirational and absolutely hilarious! He is an inspiration to us and this book show why!
While it will be about 5-10 years before the Food and Drug Administration approves his method of diagnosis, I’m fairly sure he’ll keep on perfecting it and inspiring kids for years to come!!
Name: Jack Thomas Andraka
DOB: 8 January, 1997
Occupation: Inventor and scientist, cancer researcher
Accomplishments: Invented a simple pancreatic cancer diagnosis method amongst other things.
Awards: 2014 Jefferson Award, 2012 Intel ISEF Gordon Moore Award, 2012 Smithsonian American Ingenuity Youth Award, 2014 Maryland winner of the Stockholm Water Prize
Website: www. jackandraka.com
It’s an amazing world of science out there…Let’s go
Breakthrough by Jack Andraka with Matthew Lysiak- We highly recommend this book!