A brush with death desirous ex-Facebook executive Mary Lou
Jepsen’s latest venture — a record that she claims will
capacitate us to demeanour inside the bodies and brains.
“Why let people humour if we can find out what’s really going
on?” Jepsen pronounced at
the Rock Health Summit in San Francisco on Tuesday. Her new
technology, she explained, “can demeanour inside your physique — at any
partial of the physique — in high resolution.”
She was first desirous to excavate into the plan after learning
she had a brain growth as a connoisseur tyro in her 20s. For
months, Jepsen struggled with debilitating headaches, but she had
no thought what was wrong until she finally got an MRI — a costly
indicate of her brain that can only be finished in specially-equipped
hospitals. Even today, 20 years after Jepsen had her test, the
stays a frightful distress for many people — quite those
with an existent fear of little spaces. Climbing inside a tiny,
human-sized enclave where you’ll be incompetent to pierce and subjected
to loud, pulsating sounds that commotion around your physique for up to
30 mins is no walk in the park. The bigger problem, though, is
that many diseases that can only be diagnosed with an MRI give
very few clues that advise the procession is necessary. Jepsen
went months with no thought what was going on inside her brain.
“I scarcely died — we literally went home to die — since we didn’t
know we indispensable an MRI,” Jepsen said.
Now Jepsen is operative on something that would reinstate the machine
— which costs
hospitals roughly $3 million to buy and costs consumers about
$2,600 per test — with something people could wear
potentially all the time.
Dozens of unanswered questions about Jepsen’s puzzling device
remain. In August,
Jepsen announced she was leaving her one-year army at
Facebook — where she had served as the company’s executive
executive of engineering and the conduct of display technologies at
its virtual reality arm Oculus — to work on the project, which
she described then as a “new imaging technology” that would help
“cure diseases.” Jepsen combined that the device would cringe down
the capabilities of an MRI into something affordable that people
could wear, like a hat.
MRIs use radio waves and clever magnets to create pictures of
viscera and structures inside the body. In Jepsen’s case, the test
was used to mark a growth in her brain.
Jepsen’s new apparatus would do the same thing, but instead of using
clever magnets, it would use near-infrared light — a form of
light that can dig cells and estimate blood upsurge by
specifying between blood that has been oxygenated and is
issuing divided from the heart and blood that has not been
oxygenated and is issuing towards it, she pronounced on Tuesday.
“Oxygenated blood and deoxygenated blood are opposite colors,”
A rough chronicle of the device, she said, has allowed her to
get a some-more accurate and tangible picture of the inner-workings of
the brain and physique than the fuzzy, pixelated images generated by
existent MRI machines. “We got a billion times aloft resolution
than an MRI,” Jepsen said.
It’s still misleading accurately what the new device will be called and
how distant along in growth it is, but Jepsen pronounced she could see
it being used for a accumulation of applications, from peeking inside
the brain — where it could potentially urge the understanding
mental illnesses like basin — to glimpsing the
inner-workings of the heart or tumors — where it could help treat
diseases like cancer and heart disease.
“You can buy a blood vigour cuff,” Jepsen said. “How come you
can’t demeanour inside your body?”