18-year-old Julian Rios Cantu was inspired by his mother’s tragic experience after she was diagnosed with breast cancer twice
A teenager whose mother was diagnosed with breast cancer twice has designed a bra that can help detect the disease in its early stages.
For the last year, Julian Rios Cantu, an 18-year-old student from Mexico, has been working on his potentially life-saving invention, which he calls “Eva”.
Rios Cantu said he was inspired by his mother’s battle with the disease which eventually lead to both her breasts being removed.
“When I was 13 years old, my mother was diagnosed for the second time with breast cancer,” Rios Cantu said in a company video.
“The tumour went from having the dimensions of a grain of rice to that of a golf ball in less than six months,” the teenager explained. “The diagnosis came too late and my mother lost both of her breasts and, almost, her life.”
The bra was created by Rios Cantu and three of his friends when he was 17. Earlier this year, he won top prize at the Global Student Entrepreneur Awards (GSEA). After beating 13 other student entrepreneurs from around the globe, Rios Cantu took home an impressive $20,000 (approx £15,400).
So how does the Eva bra work? Equipped with around 200 biosensors, the bra maps the surface of the breast and is able to monitor changes in temperature, shape and weight. Using an app, wearers of the bra can track their condition.
Rios Cantu, who is now the CEO of his own company Higia Technologies, told Mexican newspaper El Universal: “When there is a tumour in the breast there is more blood, more heat, so there are changes in temperature and in texture.
“If we see a persistent change, we will recommend that you go to the doctor.”
“Why a bra? Because it allows us to keep the breasts in the same position and it doesn’t have to be used more than one hour every week,” he added.
As the teen’s invention is only a prototype, he predicts it will be around two years before it will be certified for use.