Christian Parigger, associate professor of physics at the University of Tennessee Space Institute in Tullahoma, wants to advance the fight against cancer.
His big idea: develop a technology that goes on a “seek and destroy” mission for cancerous tumors.
His invention uses a femtosecond laser, which means it pulses at speeds of one-quadrillionth of a second. The high speed enables the laser to focus in on a specific region to find and acutely map a tumor.
“Using ultra-short light pulses gives us the ability to focus in a well confined region and the ability for intense radiation,” said Parigger. “This allows us to come in and leave a specific area quickly so we can diagnose and attack tumorous cells fast.”
The technology can be especially helpful to brain cancer victims.