Studying these cells could lead to new treatments for diseases ranging from gastrointestinal disease to diabetes.
South Side High School,
Rockville Centre, N.Y.
Kevin Krsulich suffered a collapsed lung last fall while playing soccer due to a genetic condition that had to be corrected surgically. Even though he still suffers minor collapses and has difficulty breathing, he returned to the field in time for the soccer playoffs. He also ran track and played varsity baseball.
"I can sit back and let my lungs get weaker and weaker or I can build them up and make the best of it," Krsulich told Newsday. "I've been playing sports since I was old enough to kick a soccer ball. It's a way to step out of your life. Nothing else matters for that time."
Krsulich teamed with Hofstra University researchers last year in an attempt to create genetically engineered high-yield cotton plants. The project earned regional honorable mention at the Intel Science and Engineering Fair.