Inspiration from Family: Bengaluru student Sia Godika, 17, won $400k Breakthrough Prize for her video on reversing cellular ageing, inspired by her grandparents battling cancer.
The Winning Video: Sia’s video explains pluripotent stem cells’ role in reversing cellular ageing, earning her the Breakthrough Junior Challenge prize and acclaim.
Acknowledgement and Recognition: Sia’s achievement includes a $250k college scholarship, $50k for her teacher, and $100k for her school’s science lab, with the honor shared at an upcoming ceremony.
Motivation and Determination: Driven by her family’s struggle, Sia is committed to contributing to research that can prevent debilitating diseases through reversing cellular ageing.
Scientific Breakthrough: Sia’s video, titled ‘Yamanaka Factors,’ explores Nobel Laureate Shinya Yamanaka’s discoveries, revealing the potential to rejuvenate adult cells.
Significance of the Discovery: Yamanaka’s breakthrough in inducing pluripotent stem cells offers promising implications for treating degenerative diseases, challenging previous notions of cell irreversibility.
Yamanaka’s Response: Shinya Yamanaka commends Sia’s video for creatively explaining his work and encourages her to continue her journey in the life sciences.
About the Competition: The Breakthrough Junior Challenge, founded by Yuri Milner and others, aims to foster interest in STEM fields and support future scientists worldwide.
Global Participation and Impact: With over 2,400 submissions from 100+ countries, the competition educates and inspires millions worldwide through engaging science communication.
Re-reported from the article originally published in The Print