A 16 year-old Filipina scientist discovered a potential cure to diabetes using Jamaican cherry or most commonly known as ‘Aratiles’.
Maria Isabel Layson is a student from Iloilo National High School. She found out that aratiles (muntingia calabura) could potentially cure diabetes type 2.
Layson observed how aratiles grew abundantly in their backyard but are often neglected. She was motivated to look into the fruit’s anti-oxidant and anti-diabetes properties because some of her family members died because of the disease.
“The inspiration for my study is the several generations of my family who have experienced death of a loved one because of diabetes. It is considered as one of the top causes of death,” Layson said in a video.
She said she hopes her research could lead to a more cost-efficient treatment of the disease. Layson vowed that her research won’t end here.
Layson’s research won the Best Individual Research in Life Science during the Department of Education’s 2019 National Science and Technology.
She also represented the Philippines in the 2019 International Science and Engineering Fair in Arizona, USA last month. Layson is also one of the scholars of Gokongwei foundation.