As scientists and researchers around the world race to find a treatment for the novel coronavirus, a 14-year-old girl from Frisco, Texas, may have come up with the answer.
Anika Chebrolu recently won the 2020 3M Young Scientist Challenge — and a $25,000 prize — for a discovery that could provide a potential therapy to COVID-19.READ MORE: Moviegoers Finally Back In Theaters, Excited For Summer Blockbuster 'Fast And Furious 9'
“It’s exciting I’m still trying to process everything,” she tells CBS 11 News in Dallas-Fort Worth.
14-year-old Frisco girl wins national award for work on finding possible COVID-19 cure https://t.co/dW6RhDVce1
— CBSDFW (@CBSDFW) October 14, 2020
Chebrolu was an eighth-grader at Nelson Middle School when she entered the contest months ago after she came down with a severe case of the flu. She originally planned her project to involve seasonal flu but later changed it to COVID-19 and says she was driven by the scope of the pandemic and the people who were suffering.READ MORE: Man Shot To Death In Unincorporated Area Near South Los Angeles
“I developed this molecule which can bind to a certain protein on the SARS-CoV-2 virus. And this protein, by binding to it, it’ll stop the function of the protein,” she explained. “I started with a database of over 682 million compounds.”
You can view her video entry below:
Chebrolu, an Indian-American who now attends Independence High School in Frisco, describes herself as a typical teenager who plans to pursue a career as a medical researcher after she graduates.
“My grandpa when I was younger he always used to push me toward science. He was actually a chemistry professor and he used to always tell me learn the periodic table of elements,” she said. “Over time I just grew to love it.”
When she isn’t in a lab or working toward her goal, Chebrolu does find time to be a normal 14-year-old, training for the Indian classical dance called Bharatanatyam and practicing her skills as an artist.MORE NEWS: Cat Named Hog Allegedly Taken By Uber Eats Driver Back Home In Studio City
“I describe myself as a person who aspires to be a lot of things,” she said.