Krtin previously won the Google Science Fair in 2015 for creating an Alzheimer’s test which can spot early signs of the disease and now he claims to have found a way to treat triple negative breast cancer, a type of breast cancer which is currently extremely difficult to treat.
Krtin has been working on this new therapy in his school lab and explained that the current difficulties in treating triple negative breast cancer are due to the cancer cell’s lack of binding sites for drugs “Most cancers have receptors on their surface which bind to [treatment] drugs like Tamoxifen but triple negative cancers don't have receptors so the drugs don't work,"
He believes inhibiting a certain protein, called ID4 — responsible for stopping stem cells from turning into a more dangerous form, or "differentiating" into potential cancer cells, in combination with increasing the body’s natural tumour suppressor function through a compound called PTEN, will allow chemotherapy to work more effectively.
"I have found a way to silence the genes that produce ID4 which turns cancer back into a less dangerous state," Krtin added.
Krtin believes this dual therapy of switching off cancer cells as well as increasing the body’s natural tumour suppression ability will prove to be a far more effective treatment for triple negative cancer cells than existing treatment options.
He is calling on the scientific community to help him develop his work further, taking it beyond the school lab, to provide further insight into triple negative breast cancer and it’s treatment.