From the nearly 1,800 who applied for the 2014 Intel Science Talent Search, only a select few – 40 truly exceptional high school seniors – were selected as finalists and invited to Washington, D.C., to present original research to judges, showcase their work, and compete for $630,000 in prizes.
On March 11, Intel announced the winners of the 2014 Intel STS at a black-tie gala at the National Building Museum.
Eric Chen, 17, of San Diego, California, won the top award of $100,000 from the Intel Foundation for his research on potential new drugs to treat influenza. His interdisciplinary approach combined computer modeling with structural studies and biological validation to find a way to inhibit endonuclease, an enzyme essential for viral propagation. This research may lead to a new class of drugs to control flu outbreaks during a pandemic, allowing time for a vaccine to be developed.
Second-place honors and $75,000 went to Kevin Lee, 17, of Irvine, California, for developing a mathematical model to describe the shape of the heart as it beats, using the principles of fluid mechanics. This faster, computationally efficient model could provide insights into arrhythmia and may lead to better treatments for the disease.
Natalie Ng, 18, of Cupertino, California, received a $30,000 award for her development of a diagnostic tool to more accurately predict the spread of breast cancer to other parts of the body.
(Information from intel.com)