A HALESOWEN College student will hunt for a rare moth in the rainforests of Borneo after he won a prestigious science award.

Sam Bedford, who lives in Pensnett, won the Royal Society International Expedition Award and is looking forward to his two-week trip in 2010.

He won the award for his project on stem cell research in muscle atrophy - a muscle wasting disorder.

His project looked at how muscle stem cells can be manipulated to decrease the amount of muscle wasting in elderly individuals, and actually increase the ability of the muscle to repair itself.

He also expects to visit pharmaceutical companies in Borneo to see drugs being produced.

Sam, aged 18, said: "I will be in the rainforests searching for a moth that has never been documented and may get to name it.

"I certainly didn't expect to win, I was competing against the best young scientists in the UK and all of the projects I looked at were fantastic and at a very high standard.

"When my name was announced at the awards ceremony it didn't register at first, the girl sitting next to me had to tell me I had won the prize."

At the awards ceremony, hosted by TVs Kate Humble, Sam met Prince Andrew and top scientists.

He said: "Being in London and winning that prize was the best experience of my life to date, but the Borneo trip promises to better it!"

Sam is studying a BTEC National Dimploma Medical Science and A/S Human Biology at the college. He would like a career in medical research or as a doctor.