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For the next installment of the Futures Hub Series, we meet Georgina, one of this years Female Founder's Prize Winners whose company Slice aims at developing a tool for organ transplants.

Q: Could you tell us a bit about your background and how you found yourself working on your project, Slice?

I’m Georgina, I’m a final year PhD student in the Paediatric and Electrical Engineering Departments here at Cambridge and part of the Connected Electronic and Photonic Systems CDT. I initially studied medical physics at UCL and during my time there, I developed an interest in medical technology, particularly brain imaging in newborns. This interest eventually led me to a Ph.D. program joint between both Cambridge and UCL, focusing on non-invasive brain imaging techniques.

The idea for our company idea, Slice, emerged when we were approached by a transplant surgeon from Addenbrooke's, who highlighted the cumbersome and inefficient method of preparing crushed ice used to preserve organs during transplant surgeries. The current method, involving manually hammering large blocks of frozen saline, was not only time-consuming but also posed a risk of repetitive strain injury to medical staff, along with potential sterility issues. I was shocked by this, and my team and I saw an opportunity to innovate!

Q: Can you elaborate on your business idea?

The essence of our company, Slice, revolves around automating the process of crushing ice used in organ transplants.

We aim to create portable, and automated device capable of creating sterile crushed ice, thereby enhancing the organ transplant process. Drawing from my background in medical technology, I proposed using ultrasound technology to crush the ice, a method that has been used in areas of industry and academia, but has not yet been employed for this specific purpose.

Our team, consisting of myself with a background in medical engineering, and two medics, Melissa and Dini, with a clinical and business background, aim to create a device that is not only effective and portable but also simple to use, streamlining the organ transplant process for surgeons as well as enhancing patient care.

Q: What are your future plans?

Winning the Female Founders prize was an incredible moment for us! It provided the financial support needed to transition from concept to prototyping. Our immediate focus is on validating the ultrasound ice-crushing technology through a functional prototype. We're collaborating with experts in ultrasound technology and engineering to refine our approach.

Beyond that, we're focusing on marketing and strategic partnerships to ensure that our solution reaches and benefits the medical community. Our vision is for Slice to become an essential tool in organ transplants worldwide, making the process safer, more efficient, and less strenuous for medical professionals.

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