The Optical Society (OSA; Washington, DC) has honored Rebecca Richards-Kortum, Ph.D., with the 2014 Michael S. Feld Biophotonics Award, recognizing her work in "advancing the applications of optics in disease diagnosis and inspiring work in disseminating low-cost health technologies to the developing world."
Richards-Kortum is Rice University's (Houston, TX) Stanley C. Moore Professor and chair of the Department of Bioengineering, and a professor of electrical and computer engineering. She is director of both Beyond Traditional Borders and Rice 360°: Institute for Global Health Technology, and also oversees the Optical Spectroscopy and Imaging Laboratory. An OSA fellow, Richards-Kortum has focused for the past two decades on translating research that integrates advances in nanotechnology and molecular imaging with microfabrication technologies to develop portable optical imaging systems that are inexpensive and provide point-of-care diagnosis. This basic and translational research is highly collaborative and has led to new technologies to improve the early detection of cancers and other diseases, especially in impoverished countries.
Named for of photonics pioneer Michael Feld, the award recognizes individuals for their innovative and influential contributions to biophotonics; it will be presented at OSA's Frontiers in Optics Annual Meeting (October 19-23, 2014, Tucson, AZ).