Dasia Taylor is one extraordinary young lady as the high school student has invented a new method to detect infection.

The 17-year-old Iowa City West High School student used root vegetables to provide the perfect dye for her groundbreaking winning invention. Taylor found a cost-effective way to create suture thread that changes color from bright red to dark purple when a wound becomes infected.


“I found that beets changed color at the perfect pH point,” said Taylor in a recent interview with Smithsonian Magazine. Bright red beet juice turns dark purple at a pH of nine. “That’s perfect for an infected wound. And so, I was like, ‘Oh, okay. So beets is where it’s at.’”

Entering the Regeneron Science Talent Search with her invention, Taylor was named one of 40 finalists in the country’s oldest and most prestigious science and math competition for high school seniors, guaranteed to receive $25,000. The grand prize winner will claim $250,000.

Just how did Taylor come up with this amazing idea? Well, as a result of her research, Taylor knew that many in underprivileged countries and even in the United States suffer from surgical wound infections and they usually are not privy to “fancy technology”.

“Someone created sutures that uses really fancy technology to identify the basic principles of wound blooding, and I was like, ‘mmm…I think the people who actually need that are not going to be able to afford it,” Taylor told WHBF, a CBS-affiliated television station.

According to the World Health Organization, about 11% of surgical wounds that become infected come from low-and middle-incoming countries. Between 2% and 4% of surgeries are from the United States.

And just like her above post says, “…I’m just making history over here,” Dasia Taylor truly is.

We cannot wait to see what the future holds for her. She is unquestionably poised to bring the world towards medical equality.

Photo: Society For Science

Tiffany Silva

Tiffany Silva

Writer and Editor

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