A project led by Professor Boris Vojnovic, a Research Fellow at the Particle Therapy Cancer Research Institute (PTCRi) and the Gray Institute for Radiation Oncology and Biology, has been awarded two prizes at The Engineer's Technology and Innovation Awards 2009.
The project, dubbed CyMap, developed an innovative, lens-free, microscope which uses light to illuminate ‘objects’ such as cells or pathogens in a sample. By focusing on the diffraction patterns made by cells, CyMap can examine these organisms as they divide, grow and die, making it useful for assessing the effectiveness of cancer therapy and other treatments, as well as many other applications. Since the system contains no physical lenses, there is no requirement for focusing or other critical adjustments.
Professor Gillies McKenna, Director of the Gray Institute and an Associate Fellow of the PTCRi, said: "The lens-free microscope is a technological breakthrough that is likely to have wide application in medical research and diagnostics. Whilst traditional lens-based microscopes have become ever more sophisticated in helping doctors and scientists to understand changes that occur in cells, sophisticated forms of the instruments tend to be complicated to use, bulky and expensive. This CyMap lens-free microscope is simple, robust and cheap.”
CyMap won first prize in the Medical and Healthcare category of The Engineer’s Technology and Innovation Awards as well as the overall Grand Prix prize.
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