LONE TREE, Colo (CBS4) – The Future Leader award winner for April is deep into research that may have implications for treating Type 1 diabetes. Molly Dolan is a junior at Rock Canyon High School. In among her advanced placement classes, she’s taking Biotechnology 2, a class where students get to run their own real-world research.

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“Biotechnology is using our understanding of biology to treat and solve world problems,” said Shawndra Fordham, a Biotech teacher.

Students create a research project proposal, they fundraise for it, they execute it, they troubleshoot any problems that happen, they analyze the results, and write a research paper at the end of the year.

“The students love it. They get to learn science in a way that’s relevant and meaningful,” Fordham explained.

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Molly Dolan and her lab partner, Lauren McCaffrey, worked on some pretty, advanced science.

LINK: Nominate A Future Leader Candidate

“The effects of insulin producing e-coli on the ingestion of Drosophila Melanogaster, also known as fruit flies,” Dolan told CBS4.

Over the course of many months, the young women fed insulin producing e-coli to diabetic fruit flies to see if it would impact their blood sugar levels.

“Our hope was that you could take a one-time probiotic, that contains the insulin producing e-coli to actually seed the gut so you get a constant stream of insulin into your blood stream,” Dolan explained.

A lofty goal for a high school junior, but right in line with her Biotechnology peers.

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“What did you like most about working on your project?” CBS4 Chief Meteorologist Lauren Whitney asked.

“It’s so fun. Even when things go wrong, we become so close as a class. That it’s just fun to hang out with them,” Dolan replied.

Dolan and McCaffrey ran into some significant scientific errors during the year. Each mistake was a lesson learned, and like all good scientists they plan to do the research project again next year.

“I love science because unlike English, there’s a right answer, but there’s multiple ways to come to it.”

RELATED: See Other Future Leader Winner Profiles

CBS4, along with our partners at the Colorado School of Mines and PDC Energy, award a Future Leader every month throughout the school years. The award honors high school students who are excelling in the science, technology, engineering, and math, or STEM fields. Winners get $1,000, and profile on CBS4 News.

  1. Good research. I was diagnosed with type 2 Diabetes and put on Metformin on June 26th, 2017. I started the some diet and followed it 100% for a few weeks and could not get my blood sugar to go below 140. Finally i began to panic and called my doctor, he told me to get used to it. He said I would be on metformin my whole life and eventually insulin. At that point i knew something wasn’t right and began to do a lot of research. Then I found Lisa’s diabetes story (google ” How I freed myself from diabetes ” ) I read that article from end to end because everything the writer was saying made absolute sense. I started the diet that day and the next week my blood sugar was down to 100 and now i have a fasting blood sugar between Mid 70’s and the 80’s. My doctor took me off the metformin after just three week of being on this lifestyle change. I have lost over 16 pounds and 3+ inches around my waist in a month. The truth is we can get off the drugs and help myself by trying natural methods

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