The technology company Fermiscan is betting that women would rather give up a hair sample than go in for a mammogram. According to an article in IEEE Spectrum, Fermiscan has been working on technology that tests hair samples for breast cancer using a multimillion-dollar particle accelerator. Supposedly, this would make traditional X-ray mammograms obsolete.
The problem is that few scientists think the scans are really accurate. Independent research groups have failed to reproduce the intended scan results. Still, many remain optimistic. “I wish [Fermiscan] really well,” medical-imaging expert Keith Rogers said, “because it would be bloody wonderful if it worked.”