Keven Stonewall Is On His Way To Finding A Cure For Cancer
19 year old Stonewallhopes to one day create a vaccine that will eradicate colon cancer. The Chicago South Side youth has already started working on a potential cancer cure at a Rush University laboratory.
The youth’s love of science began back in fifth grade, when he became fascinated by the appearance of cells under a microscope. Stonewall’s love of the sciences grew to such extremes that one Christmas he was gifted four microscopes by his parents who are educators. It was during his freshman year at the Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences that Stonewall began focusing on the need for the eradication of colon cancer. He watched not only a dear friend’s uncle succumb to the disease but witnessed first hand how the illness negatively impacted his school mate, telling DNAInfo Chicago, “Cancer has taken over a whole bunch of lives, and I felt like I needed to step up and do something about it.”
Stonewall was a senior in high school when he jumped on the opportunity to do an internship at the university, which is the academic arm of the Rush Medical Center. He worked in the lab with a professor who taught immunology/microbiology and general surgery. Stonewall began to consume literature about how a chemotherapeutic agent could possibly destroy certain cancer cells while still promoting a healthy immune response.
The young researcher, who has already won numerous awards for his research and was a finalist for theIntel International Science and Engineer Fairlast year, then began testing his potential vaccine on mice. He injected a concentrated amount of the cancer-treating drugMitoxantronein younger and older mice. Stonewall then injected the rodents with aggressive colon cancer cells.
Stonewall waited three days to check out the effects of his experiment: The younger mice benefitted from the vaccine as their cancer was in fact eradicated and they had developed immunity. The older mice were still ridden with the cancerous tumors.
“[He] should be heralded for helping to develop more effective colon cancer treatments that will impact the elderly, the population that is most susceptible to colon cancer. He has all the tools. He will go far.”
Stonewall, who is now a sophomore at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, is still working on the vaccine that he prays will one day be tested on humans. The young man is keeping hope alive that his work will in fact be the answer to a dreaded disease that has taken the lives of many, so until then, he tells the New York Daily News, “If you don’t plan to succeed, you’re planning to fail.”
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“A 19-year-old Chicago teen may one day hold the key to curing colon cancer.
If his previous successes are any indication, Keven Stonewall is well on his way to becoming the kind of scientist who leaves a lasting impact in the realm of cancer research.
In his senior year of high school, this young man from the city’s South Side was already working on a potential colon cancer vaccine at a Rush University lab, DNAInfo reports. “My friends, family members have died from cancer,” Stonewall said in a VNM video. “A lot of people are impacted by cancer. So I felt it was my role to step up and do something about it.”
At first, his friends mocked his dedication to science. When they were out on vacation, he was holed up in his lab. “I was one of the few kids who were engaged,” Stonewall said. “At first they were making fun of me, like ‘Come on man, why you want to be in the lab all day?’””