A passion for biology has paid off big-time for an Illinois high school senior.
Marissa Suchyta of South Barrington won a $40,000 scholarship prize at the Siemens Competition national finals in New York. She is 17 and attends the University of Chicago lab school.
Marissa investigated a protein called geminin and how it blocks DNA from replicating. That could be useful information someday for treating diseases like cancer.
The teen scientist told The Associated Press her prize will help pay college tuition. She plans to become a neurosurgeon and continue her research.
A New York teen won the contest's top individual prize of $100,000.
Winners of the Siemens Competition in Math, Science and Technology were announced Monday.