Cancer research scores big at Intel ISEF | Science News

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Cancer research scores big at Intel ISEF

Teens take home top prizes at premier high school Science and Engineering Fair

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7:00pm, May 16, 2014

Intel ISEF 2014 top winners (left to right) Shannon Lee, Lennart Kleinwort and Nathan Han.

LOS ANGELES — An innovative statistical analysis of cancer-promoting genes earned a 15-year-old the top prize — and $75,000 — at the world’s premier high school science and engineering competition. Nathan Han of Boston claimed first prize at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair 2014 on May 16.

“Intel believes that young people are the key to innovation. And we hope that these winners inspire more students to get involved in science, technology, engineering and math,” says Wendy Hawkins, executive director of the Intel Foundation.

Han earned his award for studying mutations in a gene associated with breast cancer. He surveyed public health databases, gathering data on mutations that affect the structure of a protein that normally repairs cell damage and stifles tumor growth. By analyzing how different mutations change the protein’s structure, Han identified

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