The Problem

Why work in mammography? ...

More than 500,000 women die every year worldwide because of breast cancer. Early diagnosis and continuous follow-up is the key to reducing this figure. In BioNIRS we are working in the development of an Optical Mammography system that would be able to complement conventional techniques, in an innocuous, comfortable and economically accessible way Framed in an target market of more than US $ 1,750 million in optical diagnostic systems.

It consists of a medical mammography imaging system in diffuse reflectance geometry using infrared (IR) light instead of X-ray (RX). The technology is based on more than 13 years of research done by the Biomedical Optics Lab of the Center of Research in Physics and Engineering of the Center of the Province of Buenos Aires, Tandil, Argentina (CIFICEN) with tripartite dependence of UNCPBA, CICPBA and CONICET.

We seek the funds to develop a clinical prototype that could medically validate what has already been tested in the laboratory. We have an interdisciplinary team of CIFICEN scientists and biomedical engineers from Favaloro University with master's degrees in business Administration.

The diagnosis and monitoring of breast pathologies is not yet resolved.

X-ray mammography saves lives, and it's the best there is for now...

High incidence of breast cancer

+500.000 global deaths per year. It affects one in eight women who reach the age of 85 years.

Ionizing radiation of X-rays

X-rays cause 4 out of 100 cases of cancer. The age for the first mammography is delayed more and more.

Technological limitations

Compression in X-ray mammography can be very painful. Ultrasound has low specificity. Half of the biopsies are unnecessary.

Our solution

Optical Mammography

Using diffuse reflectance

Medical mammography imaging system using diffuse reflectance geometry and infrared light.


No ionizing radiation, non-invasive, no moving parts, and suitable for all patients


It does not require breast compression, is portable, and doesn't need specialized infrastructure.


It does not require a specialized technician, is autonomous, and economical compared to others dispositives.


Metabolic information, continuous monitoring, high specificity.

How does it work??

The proposed device consists of a stretcher with a transparent window below which the measuring system is placed. In this way, the patient lies face down on the stretcher with the breasts resting on the aforementioned window. This configuration prevents the compression of the breast between two plates, typical of traditional mammography systems.

Esquema mamografo

The measurement system consists essentially of two or more lasers of different wavelengths within the NIR zone, a high sensitivity CCD camera and a galvanometric scanner that allows to direct the laser beam in order to scan the area to be studied. For each position of the laser, an image of the whole field is taken with the camera. In addition, a system of interferometric filters allows the selection of determined wavelengths, useful for the determination of the optical characteristics of the tissue.

What has been done

Argentinian patent requested via CONICET and INPI. December of 2018.

PCT patent application. December of 2019.

What is needed?

Time and investment


Premio Prendete 2017

Prendete 2017

"Prendete" is an Innovative Business Ideas Contest that was born in the city of Tandil in 2015. It seeks the development of innovative initiatives and establish itself as a starting point for viable, scalable and employment generating projects. It invites groups of entrepreneurs who want to boost their initiatives, in addition to providing training through mentoring, and reward those teams that present the best innovations

IB50k+ 2018

The objective of the IB50K is to promote the entrepreneurial capacity of students and young professionals from national universities, as well as to encourage the creation and development of technological innovation companies in Argentina.

The contest is promoted by the Balseiro Institute, dependent on the National Atomic Energy Commission (CNEA) and the National University of Cuyo (UNCuyo).