Stanford University: Expertise & MHS Grad’s Invention to Identify Malaria


A 2013’s Milton High School graduates have been working with a team of researchers at Stanford University in California to originate a system that helps to diagnose malaria. Together, the team of the researcher as well as the graduates came up with twine, plastic as well as a paper fuse made of paper. Brandon Benson, an MHS graduate described, “You pull on the toy and make it spin very fast. It’s so fast it can be used as a centrifuge, a machine that uses centrifugal force to separate substances”. Brandon Benson said, “We are trying to diagnose disease in Third World countries,” said Benson, explaining the overall goal. For that reason, the device must be easy to use and inexpensive.

 Benson says the device requires less than a dollar to make, it means it is cost effective. He added, “If you add safety features,” he said that cost goes up”. The expertise and team tested the device in Madagascar also they want to perform more operational testing in places with a lot of mosquitoes. Most of the malaria cases reported from the moist environment areas. Malaria is a disease caused by an organism that infects red blood cells. As a disease affects the oxygen levels in red blood cells so the death from malaria is quite common just because oxygen is needed for all parts of the body. A biology teacher at MHS, Steve Heilman said, “It is not bacteria, so it is not affected by antibiotics. It all depends on the person’s immune system”. Heilman said, “Always remember to use mosquito repellent and stay away from large bodies of water in hot and moist environments”.