Viktor Gruev, ECE alum, breaks ground in cancer detection

November 22, 2016
Photo via Bio Sensors Lab

Photo via Bio Sensors Lab

Viktor Gruev, associate professor of electrical engineering at the University of Illinois, and his team, comprised of researchers from Australia,England, and the University of Maryland, have developed a camera that can detect cancer cells by using polarized light.  Cancer cells, unlike healthy cells, react differently when viewed through polarized light, however the difference is not noticeable to the human eye. The researchers hope to develop one camera that is efficient enough for doctors to use in the operating room.

“We’ve translated this into the operating room during breast cancer surgeries to enable the physician to correctly identify lymph nodes or particular organs and successfully remove all primary and secondary tumors,” he said. “It’s a different type of problem that we solved: going from the developing nanostructures in the cleanroom, to integrating these photonic crystals with sensors, to finally translating an idea to the operating room.”  Excerpted from MNTL Illinois

Viktor, a former Ph.D student of Ralph Etienne- Cummings, received his M.S. (2000) and Ph.D (2004) in electrical and computer engineering from Johns Hopkins University. This year he was the recipient of the IEEE Donald G. Fink Award for his work in imaging sensors and their medical applications.

Read more about his team’s research work in BTN’s article on the research breakthrough. 


Note: The first integrated polarization camera was designed in Professor Andreas G. Andreou‘s  lab nearly 20 years ago. Professor Andreou worked with Lawrence B. Wolff, Todd A. Mancini, and Philippe Pouliquen. Read more about their work on the Liquid Crystal Polarization Camera and Professor Andreou’s Polarization Imaging: Principles and Integrated Polarimeters.

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