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2 May, 2017 13:08

Bra that checks for breast cancer earns Mexican teen top prize

Bra that checks for breast cancer earns Mexican teen top prize

A cancer-detecting bra created by a Mexican teenager has won the top prize at the Global Student Entrepreneur Awards (GSEA). Julian Rios Cantu is US$20,000 richer following the recognition of his EVA bra, inspired by his own mother's fight against cancer.

The bra, developed by the 18 year old’s own company Higia Technologies, comes equipped with around 200 biosensors that map the surface of the breasts and monitor them for changes in temperature, shape and weight.

“Why a bra? Because it allows us to have the breasts in the same position and it doesn’t have to be worn more than one hour a week,” Rios Cantu told El Universal.

The engineering student said the sensors send data to an application or computer which monitor for changes including more blood flow, which could indicate blood vessels are “feeding” a cancer.

“As soon as there is a malformation in the breast or a tumor, there is an over-vascularization; so the more [flow of] blood, the higher the temperature," he said.

Rios Cantu will be able to use the money to finish development of EVA, which has also won him the Everis Mexico Award for Entrepreneurs. Taking to Instagram he said his eyes are firmly set on Silicon Valley as their next destination.

Después de GSEA y Alemania, ponemos nuestra mira en el siguiente reto: Silicon Valley, California. #GoHigia #LetsCrushIt

A post shared by Julián Ríos Cantú (@julianrioscantu) on

The bra was created after Rios Cantu witnessed his own mother repeatedly battle breast cancer, before having both breasts removed. EVA provides a less aggressive and painful alternative to mammograms, in which the breast is X-rayed using ionizing radiations.

A study published in the British Medical Journal found that mammograms can assist in the spread of cancer cells to other parts of the body.

Breastcancer.org dismissed concerns over radiation levels, saying the level of radiation is less than that of a standard chest X-ray.