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Kay Raymond Oskal. Photo: IRIS

Meet Kay Raymond


Kay Raymond is a true outdoorsman from Finnmark in the northernmost part of Norway. He holds a master’s degree in Automation and Signal Processing from the University in Stavanger (UiS) and is now doing his Ph.D. at IRIS.

Name: Kay Raymond Oskal
Age: 36
Nationality: Norwegian
Education: Kay Raymond is an electrical engineer and has a master’s degree in Automation and Signal Processing from the University in Stavanger (UiS) and is now doing his Ph.D. at IRIS.

IRIS Energy Department: Ph.D. fellow in the MedTech department.
IRIS has medical technology (MedTech) as a new priority and has established a research group within this field. The group has competence within the following areas:
  • Digital signal processing and analysis
  • Diagnostic analysis of medical images, e.g. detection and classification of tumors
  • Decision support systems in biomedical applications
  • Sensor technology
  • Mathematical modelling of physiological systems
  • Laboratory methods and modelling tools; e.g. biophysics, molecular biology, flow studies, physiological regulation
  • Project management
  • Access to broad competence and laboratory facilities at IRIS 

What inspired you to become a scientist?
- Since I was a kid I have always liked nature and natural science. I think it is very interesting to work with medical data, like I did on my master’s thesis. Here I worked with data from heart rate monitors or sports watches from cyclists during the “Nordsjørittet” analyzing data and patterns that could  predict myocardial damage. This was part of the “NEEDED” project.   

What do you like/dislike about your job?
- This academic environment is extremely inspiring to me and I think it is a fascinating project I am working on. The down side is that I need to spend most of the working time indoor, but I can live with that, Kay Raymond says with a smile.

What are you working on right now?
- Right now I am working on my Ph.D. project. It is about developing methods and technologies to  pre-screen skin samples for malignant melanoma, Kay Raymond explains. This is a severe and aggressive type of skin cancer, with a rapid decrease in survival rate if not diagnosed and treated at an early stage. Diagnosis of skin cancer from skin biopsies is a difficult and time-consuming task, and the challenge is to find the few cases of malignant melanomas among the many other benign cases or those with less aggressive skin cancers. In 2016 about 18,000 skin biopsies were diagnosed at the department of Pathology at Stavanger University Hospital, while only about 125 of these were from malignant melanoma patients. If detected very early there is a great chance of 100 percent recovery for the patient. But if detected at a later stage it is unfortunately a very aggressive and potentially deadly disease. Pre-screening of the skin samples will help pathologists to quickly prioritize which cases to diagnose immediately and which samples that can wait. This will first of all help save lives and secondly also money in the health sector. My research is done within image processing, deep learning and machine learning. 
What has been your best IRIS moment so far?
- Well, have only worked here since November 2017. I think there is a lot of great people here and especially the Christmas party was a very good experience. So, all credits to the ones who organized it.

What do you like to do in your spare time?
-  I am a 100 percent outdoorsman, so I love hiking, climbing and skiing in the mountains. But I am also very fond of cycling.

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