Nigerian-born scientist wins prestigious award for cancer-seeing glasses

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Nigerian-born scientist, Samuel Achilefu, has been awarded the prestigious 2014 Louis Award for creating cancer-seeing glasses, according to several media reports.

A professor of radiology and biomedical engineering, Dr. Achilefu and his team developed the imaging technology in cancer diagnosis into a wearable night vision-like goggles so surgeons could see the cancer cells while operating.

“They basically have to operate in the dark,” said Dr. Achilefu in a Bloomberg Businessweek report.

This month, the goggles were used on humans for the first time by surgeons at the Washington University School of Medicine, where four patients suffering from breast cancer and over two dozen patients with melanoma or liver cancer were operated on using the goggles since they were developed.

Dr. Achilefu and his team began work in 2012 after they received $2.8 million grant from the National Institutes of Health, according to the report. Before then, they had been working on a lean budget provided by the Department of Defence’s Breast Cancer Research Program.

After it was developed, the team spent years testing the technology on mice, rats, and rabbits to confirm the efficacy of the goggles.

Source: Premium Times

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