Laurie Locasio-Brown, a biomedical engineer from Silver Spring, Md., and Steven J. Choquette, a research chemist from Gaithersburg, Md., jointly received the Applied Research Award from the National Institute of Standards and Technology.
Both researchers, who work in NIST's Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory, were recognized for their outstanding efforts and unusual creativity in the conceptualization, development and critical evaluation of a flow-injection immunoassay device for measuring breast cancer markers in human serum. Cancer researchers have found that suppression of the primary metabolic pathways of the principal estrogen hormone secreted by the ovaries is linked strongly to breast cancer in women. Based on immunoassay technology--which uses antibodies like those found in the human body to seek out and latch onto substances to be measured--the new device provides a rapid and inexpensive means for measuring concentrations of these estrogen hormones in serum. When commercialized, this system will provide physicians with a low-cost tool for in-office screening of breast cancer risk.
The Applied Research Award was established in 1975 to recognize superior achievement in the practical application of the results of scientific or engineering research.
As a non-regulatory agency of the Commerce Department's Technology Administration, NIST promotes U.S. economic growth by working with industry to develop and apply technology, measurements and standards.