Indian-American teen becomes the first to sequence angelfish DNAtext_fields
A 17-year-old Indian-American boy Indeever Madireddy has become the first to sequence the genome of freshwater angelfish. He worked at BioCurious, a community lab in Santa Clara that provides advanced equipment available to anyone for a membership fee.
Indeever had a pet fish that died following which he decided to sequence the DNA. "Although my fish was dead, I wanted to preserve it forever. So I decided to sequence the genome of the angelfish with the hopes that I could contribute that information to the scientific community, while also paying a small tribute to my pet," he told NewScientist.
The pet fish was stored at a temperature of -80°C to preserve its DNA. The teen spent a month learning how to sequence DNA and then spent two weekends working on the specimen. He also wrote a research paper explaining how the DNA was extracted with the NEB Monarch genomic DNA purification kit.
"In this work, I sequenced, assembled, and annotated the complete genome of the freshwater angelfish in addition to the full mitochondrial genome with Oxford Nanopore Technologies," he wrote in the paper. He is a fish keeper who has many angelfish in his aquarium.
He raised half of the expenses by crowdfunding. The estimated cost of sequencing was around $2000. He has now received the prestigious Davidson Fellows Scholarship Program for a science project "Stably Integrating CRISPR-Cas9 to Augment the Mammalian Immune System to Protect Against Viral Infections."