Keady pupils qualify for BT's Young Scientist Competition

Richard Burden

Reporter:

Richard Burden

Email:

richard.burden@ulstergazette.co.uk

CONGRATULATIONS to St Patrick’s High School Keady Year 9 students who have qualified for the BT Young Scientist Competition in Dublin 2020.

Josie Lennon, Shea Mallon and Ryan Clarke have been selected to present their project in the Junior section of Biological and Ecological Sciences. Their project is entitled: ‘Propolis - To Bee or Not to Bee’.

Their project aims to look at the antibacterial properties of Propolis from different regions of Ireland and Europe.

The pupils went on to describe their project as follows: “We are all interested in natural alternatives to pharmaceutical products. Propolis is produced by Bees to protect their hives from infection. Propolis has been used for thousands of years to treat sore throats and keep wounds clear by humans. Recent studies have shown that Propolis efficacy can vary depending on geographical location and natural flora, in particular Poplar trees.

“We have managed to source raw propolis from different areas in Ireland as well as from countries in Europe. We have been in contact with Bee Keepers’ associations who are helping us with our project. 

“We are investigating to see if there is a correlation between the antibacterial properties of Propolis and the abundance of Poplar trees. Bees collect tree resin from Poplar which they use to manufacture Propolis. This study will focus on mainland Europe (where Poplar trees are abundant) and Ireland (where Poplar trees are now scarce). 

“Research suggests that Bees use different sources of tree resin when Poplar trees are not available. We want to see if the antibacterial properties of propolis are affected by the lack of Poplar trees to forage on.”

Principal, Dr Moore and Head of Department Mrs Connolly said: “We are extremely proud of the pupils and what they have achieved and we wish them every success in the competition which will be held in Dublin in January.”

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