Fourteen-year-old Anika Chebrolu, from Frisco, was named winner of the national 3M Young Scientist Challenge after discovering a molecule that can selectively bind to the spike protein of the SARS-COV-2 virus, which causes COVID-19. The discovery could potentially lead to a cure, and she won $25,000, a special destination trip and the title of America’s Top Young Scientist for her achievement. The competition opened in December 2019 for students in grades five to eight to find a unique solution to an everyday problem.
She originally planned for her project to focus on the influenza virus, but pivoted once COVID-19 hit and she realized the severity of the pandemic. Chebrolu was in eighth grade when she submitted the project.
For more information, visit YoungScientistLab.com/challenge.