Cancer Seeking Glasses

The medical world is making a big breakthrough in today’s world of medicine. A team led by Samuel Achilefu, PhD, professor of radiology and biomedical engineering at Washington University have created high-tech glasses that help surgeons visualize cancer cells. These glasses, which are so new that they have yet to be named, use video technology, a head-mounted display and a targeted molecular agent that attaches to cancer cells and make them appear blue when seen through the glasses.

These glasses were used for the first time during surgery by breast surgeon Julie Margenthaler, MD, on February 10, 2014. The glasses are still in the early stages of development and further testing is needed to be done. These were intended to prevent the need of follow up surgeries for patients. Patients with cancer, like breast cancer, often have to have a second surgery to make sure they have removed the entire tumor. After having a first surgery, today’s technology doesn’t adequately show the extent of the disease. With the use of these glasses, the cancer cells will be made visible due to the molecular agent, and will allow the surgeon to see the affected area.

Although these glasses are bringing tumor imaging to the operating room, they are not the only piece of technology that is helping with this discovery. Other researchers have been modifying a surgical knife that uses heat to cut through tissue to determine if the tissue is cancerous or not. With these new advancements in technology, fatalities may be reduced in cancer patients in the future.

Blast from the Past

The Joliet JackHammers are returning for a special ‘Throwback Thursday’ game on August 28th. If the phrase ‘The Joliet JackHammers’ does not jog your memory maybe ‘The Joliet Slammers’ will.

From 2002 to 2010 Silver Cross Field was home to the Joliet JackHammers in Joliet. The team was sold, due to financial issues, in December 2010 to Steel City Baseball, LLC. The team name was changed to the Joliet Slammers beginning the 2011 season. At the same time as the name change the team also introduced a new mascot and logo, creating a newly envisioned franchise.

The event will feature the stadiums previous mascot, Jammer, as well as many former JackHammers players. Fans who wear JackHammer gear to the game will receive free gifts at the gate. Throughout the game there will also be special trivia, raffles, and door prizes. The game starts at 7:05 PM on Thursday August 28th as the Joliet Slammers face the Florence Freedom. All are welcome to join in the festivities and cheer on the Slammers to a victory.


Operation Backpacks

Jordan Community School in Chicago has a student body of 620 students that come from low-income families. Each year these students begin the school year without school supplies and therefore steal from their classmates. Synagogue member Lois Scheyer, was inspired by Rabbi Herbet Bronstein, who gave a sermon about the importance of volunteering and how much children need mentors. Together her and her husband collected money and supplies for the students of Jordan Community School in Chicago. At Jordan Community School Lois witnessed children stealing supplies from their classmates. Operation Backpack began thirteen years ago and this upcoming Sunday, August 31, the North Shore Congregation Israel in Glencoe, will be hosting Operation Backpack. The community is encouraged to help students begin their school year with new school supplies by making donations.

The North Shore Congregation Israel is also looking for volunteers to help collect, stuff and deliver school supplies. Operation Backpack takes up about two hours. Congregants Chadd Berkum and his wife, Susan, from Highland Park, serve as coordinators for Operation Backpack. “(For packers) it’s like walking around in a big grocery store. You are given a list for each classroom and you pick those items off a shelf. Then, you seal them in a box and put the box in the truck that delivers the supplies to the school,” Chadd stated.

Similar to the North Shore Congregation Israel, here in Joliet, Silver Cross Hospital partners with Catholic Charities Daybreak Center at the University of St. Francis and gives low-income families the opportunity to take their child in for school physicals, asthma screenings, Tuberculosis tests and lead screenings given by Silver Cross employees. In addition, children entering kindergarten through twelfth grad receive backpacks filled with school supplies.