19 May 2016 No Comments by The Northern Standard

By Cianna McNally

A Clones student last week took home two major awards from an international science fair.
Louis Madden, a fifth year student in Largy College, won the awards at Intel ISEF (International Science and Engineering Fair), the world’s largest international pre-college science competition which took place in Phoenix, Arizona from 8th – 13th May. Louis, who is son of Irene Dunwoody and Paul Madden, secured his place at Intel ISEF when he won the top award at the SciFest 2015 national final last November with his project that looked at whether genetic testing and DNA research can be carried out simply, cheaply and efficiently.
Louis found that important genetic research was often limited by the cost of the necessary equipment. He spent just under €150 on cheap and recycled material to build several pieces of laboratory equipment including a vortex, centrifuge, PCR, transilluminator, gel box with power supply and gel camera. Using this equipment, he isolated and amplified chloroplast DNA. Comparing his results with those of other tests of the same material he demonstrated that genetic testing could be done in a simpler, cheaper and more effective manner.
Intel ISEF is the world’s largest international pre-college science competition, involving some 1,700 students from over 75 countries competing for a prize fund totalling $4million. Louis’ Intel ISEF awards …

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