Camera based on shrimp eye sees cancer cells

A new animal-inspired camera can assist surgeons removing tumours...
13 May 2021
Presented by Chris Smith
Production by Adam Murphy.


Mantis Shrimp


The mantis shrimp is a sea creature with a particular party piece. While our eyes are sensitive to three colours, red, green and blue, which our brain uses to make the full rainbow of colours we see, the mantis shrimp is sensitive to 12 to 16 different colours, giving them a much wider spectrum of colours. Scientists in the University of Illinois figured this might be useful, and have created a camera that can see colours we can’t. The idea is that if you tag a cancerous tumour with a fluorescent chemical that we can’t see, but the camera can, it will give surgeons a quick and easy way to check they’ve removed all of a tumour, and gotten all the little secondary ones. Adam Murphy spoke to Viktor Gruev about this new camera...


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