Indian-American Scientist Sumita Mitra Wins European Inventor Award 2021

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Indian-American scientist Sumita Mitra has won the European Inventor Award 2021. It is one of Europe’s most prestigious innovation prizes. She got the award in the Non-European Patent Office (EPO) countries category for her application of nanotechnology in dentistry.

The award ceremony was held digitally and was open to public who wanted to attend it.

Sumita Mitra is currently a partner at Mitra Chemical Consulting, LLC. She set this company with her husband after leaving 3M in 2010. Mitra won the award for her innovations in dental filling materials back in the 90s. She is credited with successful integration of nanotechnology in dental materials that helped in producing fillings that are both stronger and aesthetically pleasing.
Praising Mitra work in the field, EPO president António Campinos said, “Sumita Mitra took an entirely new path in her field, and demonstrated how technological innovation, protected by patents, can transform a sector, and in this case bring benefits to millions of dental patients.” He further added that Mitra’s invention remains commercially successful even 20 years after its launch.

On using nanotechnology to make a new material for dental fillings, Mitra said, “It restores peoples smiles and improves the quality of their lives.” While several new generation of what are popularly known composite fillings have been developed since its launch, the current line of products is still based on Mitra’s original patents.

Today Mitra volunteers at schools and colleges to pass on her enthusiasm for science to young people. According to her, “Curiosity and exploration are the essential points of starting an innovation. It is something that we really need to cultivate in our children.”