Long Island Teen's Research Breakthrough
The findings from Trinity Russell's fruit fly study have real implications for the science community.
  • More About Trinity Russell :
  • Favorite quote: "Your attitude determines your altitude." --Unknown

  • Trinity Russell

  • Seeking answers through science
  • Age: 17
  • School: Commack High School
  • Hometown: East Northport, N.Y.
  • Gender: Female
  • Category: Science and Technology
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  • After seeing fruit flies kept in small containers at a research lab during a school trip, Trinity decided to compare fruit flies that were reared in laboratories with thousands of flies caught from the outdoors. In her yearlong research, she found that the laboratory-reared flies were unable to withstand starvation, struggled to gain altitude and were attracted to the dark -- unlike the ones collected from the outdoors. "I concluded that scientists' experiments may be compromised because they are using domesticated, or laboratory-reared, flies," she said. "Since fruit flies are remarkably similar to humans and contain approximately 70 percent of all human disease genes, the implications of the research were monumental."Her research eventually won her third place in her division at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, and she was published last year in the Journal of Experimental Secondary Science. She wants to continue studying fruit flies and hopes to become a doctor and researcher. She also wants to start a mentoring program to encourage young people to consider research and science careers. "The answer to every problem lies within science," she said. "With science we can continue to cure disease and discover great new things. I feel as if science is truly the key to our future."