UK Trade & Investment’s (UKTI) Sirius Programme is set to help 2 entrepreneurs change the face of cancer treatment for millions of patients round the world.
Medical physicist, Shakardokht Jafari, from Afghanistan and her partner, Iranian Shabnam Jamshidi set up TrueInvivo in November 2014. Since July 2012, while studying for her PhD at the University of Surrey, Shakardokht had been working on developing a medical device for quality assurance of radiation treatment received by cancer patients. The product is a non-invasive implant, like a nasal or urinary catheter, which penetrates a patient’s skin, allowing for more effective analysis of how a tumour is targeted and how to avoid damaging healthy cells during treatment.
“Like many people, I have seen a loved one, my father, die of cancer,” says Shakardokht. “I wanted to find a way to help that would be accessible to patients even in very poor countries like Afghanistan. Radiotherapy is considered to be a highly effective, cutting edge treatment and yet it can cure less than 40% of cancer sufferers. I saw a need to improve the accuracy of the dosage and came up with a novel way of measuring it whilst the treatment is being delivered. Medical physicists can use this device to better assess the radiation treatment delivery and alter it as needed to get the best possible results.”