Robert Nason Beck
- Category : 1928-births
- Type : ME
- Profile : 2/4 - Hermit / Opportunist
- Definition : Split - Small (19,44,48,55)
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Service 1
American scientist and a pioneer in the field of nuclear medicine. Part of a University of Chicago team, he was the first to propose, in 1961, the use of the radioisotope technetium-99m to detect disease using Positron Emission Tomography, a technique that is used an estimated 20 million times a year throughout the world. Beck also helped develop collimators for sharpening the images produced by gamma-ray scanners, and was referred to as 'Mr. Collimator' by colleagues.
Beck also served as a professor of radiology at the University of Chicago until his retirement in 1998. During his life, Beck published nearly 250 scientific papers and served on several task forces, in the field, especially for the Society of Nuclear Medicine and the International Atomic Energy Agency.
Beck's mother was a member of the Comanche tribe, accounting for Beck's long-term interest in American Indian matters: he was, for example, one of the earliest members of the National Museum of the American Indian. Robert Beck married Ariadne Plumis in 1958, and they celebrated their 50th anniversary shortly before his death on 6 August 2008 in Chicago, Illinois. He died after a several-year battle with myelodysplastic syndrome, a form of leukemia.