When Janie Kim was a student at Thurgood Marshall Middle School in Scripps Ranch, she was wearing contact lenses, and every now and then she got an infection in her eyes.
For the school's science fair, Janie decided to find the best possible solution for killing germs, FOX 5 News reports.
Part of the assignment was to find a professional mentor. “I googled ‘BioMed professor San Diego’ and I found Dr. Victor Nizet and then I just emailed him,” Janie told FOX 5.
Dr. Nizet happened to be one the world’s leading specialists in infectious diseases, with his own lab at UC San Diego. He was impressed with Janie's research plan and invited her to test her ideas in his lab -- but they had to wait till Janie turned 14. At her young age, she couldn't legally work in the lab.
In the course of their tests, Janie and her collaborators came up with a unique solution that experts say is five times better at killing bacteria than anything currently on the market.
Now 17 and a high school junior, Janie has had her work published by the American Society for Microbiology – a pretty surprising accomplishment for a high school student.
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