This remarkable young man gave a speech telling his audience how he did it. The video is 9 minutes long. He explains that he had an idea – an inspiration – and then put his head down and started to work on it. He failed 4000 times before succeeding. The result is a test that takes five minutes and predicts cancer 100% of the time.
He reminds me of Thomas Edison who famously said that he learned thousands of ways not to make a light bulb before finding the way to make it work. Or Colonel Sanders who failed to sell his special recipe hundreds of times before making his first sale. Sanders was asked what would have happened if he hadn’t made that sale? He responded: “I would have kept on trying.”
It took young Jack (he’s 15) seven months before finding the combination that resulted in his discovery. He said essentially the same thing: he knew it was out there, he was determined to find it.
The implications of his discovery are almost beyond imagining. Pancreatic cancer can be the most vicious kind, killing its host within months of its discovery. If it could be discovered much earlier, the chances of survival (now about 5%) would be greatly improved. What an impact that would have on medical care and treatment. What other markers are out there to provide early warnings for other invasive and deadly diseases?
Jack also proves what can be done when he is left alone. What’s interesting is that with all the money we’re spending on cancer research it took a high-schooler to change totally the face of cancer screenings.
Jack is self-effacing and charming and just a little surprised at the reception he’s receiving. Here’s the link to the story and the video.