Horseshoe crabs have a protein that tags bacteria and tells their body to destroy it. This led 15 year old sophomore Riley Ennis to ask this question. “If we could take their name tag, a bit of the patients tumor mix them together and stick them back in the patient will you be able to teach the body to recognize and destroy the cancer?”
Because Riley Ennis was interested in the ocean as a kid he watched a Nova TV special about horseshoe crabs which caused him to ask the question above and led him to this research-
He mixed a vaccine, the bad stuff, cancer and protein, red dye (immune system tracker) to see how the immune system responds. This mix was injected into an octopi to see if the red dot would show where all the immune cells moved to.
If there was a red dot it would show the octopus was attacking the cancer. Watch this astounding video to see what happens.
Too many times the news focuses on young adults who get in trouble while ignoring those are setting out to bring a better life to all of us. Riley Ennis is clearly on a noble mission. With his success and that of many others we may all live quality lives of 100 years or more.