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SPIE supports breast cancer research in the lab, awareness in the community

27 October 2009

BELLINGHAM, Washington, USA -- As international researchers prepare to present their latest work on new diagnostic and treatment methods for breast cancer at an SPIE-sponsored event next January, SPIE is supporting an annual art exhibit in its headquarters community to raise awareness of the condition.

At home, SPIE is among several local organizations which annually support "Reaching for the Light," a non-juried exhibition in support of breast cancer survivors and their families. This year's show opens with a reception on 13 November at the Blue Horse Gallery (Bellingham, Washington, USA) and runs through 27 November.

In San Francisco (California, USA), the not-for-profit optics and photonics professional society will present SPIE Photonics West, an international conference and exhibition that each January convenes thousands of top researchers and technology developers. Papers are presented on topics such as detecting cancer cells using sound waves, using laser technology to better identify cancer cells during surgery, or using 3D models to distinguish healthy from unhealthy tissues.

The event is one of several annual SPIE events where medical applications of optics and photonics are spotlighted. SPIE also organizes meetings on remote sensing, infrared and laser technologies, communications, microelectronics, optoelectronics, and other topics, and publishes technical articles in the SPIE Digital Library and the SPIE Newsroom.

October is observed as Breast Cancer Awareness Month around the world. Early detection is considered to be a key factor in survival of the disease. As mammography rates have more than doubled for women age 50 and older over the past 20 years, breast cancer deaths have declined.

SPIE is the international society for optics and photonics founded in 1955 to advance light-based technologies. Serving more than 188,000 constituents from 138 countries, the Society advances emerging technologies through interdisciplinary information exchange, continuing education, publications, patent precedent, and career and professional growth. SPIE annually organizes and sponsors approximately 25 major technical forums, exhibitions, and education programs in North America, Europe, Asia, and the South Pacific. In 2008, SPIE contributed $1.9 million in support of scholarships, grants, and other education programs around the world. For more information, visit SPIE.org.

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Media contact:
Amy Nelson
Public Relations Manager
+1 360 685 5478

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