Alia Al Mansoori won the Genes in Space UAE competition to propose an experiment to be tested in space
Emirati teenager who won competition to have her experiment conducted in space enlisted in a summer internship at Harvard
An Emirati teenager has been enlisted in a summer training programme at Harvard University — making her the youngest person from the UAE to take part.
A picture of Alia Al Mansoori, 15, who won the Genes in Space UAE competition to propose an experiment to be tested on the International Space Station, was posted on Instagram, showing her holding her Harvard University matriculation card.
Alia, a pupil at Al Mawakeb School in Dubai, was one of five finalists in the competition, which was sponsored by The National, the aerospace corporation Boeing, and the UAE Space Agency.
She won for her experiment which examined how genes could change under the stresses of the atmosphere in space. Her samples were placed in a machine on board the International Space Station that can be used to copy DNA multiple times.
Using the samples, scientists were able to detect changes in the way DNA transmits instructions through proteins and other molecules in living organisms that were caused by being in space.
Her experiment means that the DNA experiments using human genomes can now be carried out on the ISS for the first time.
Since winning the competition, she has watched the launch of a rocket in Florida that carried her experiment into space, in addition to meeting Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai and Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.