Trailblazer mathematics genius dies of cancer at 40

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California: Maryam Mirzakhani, an Iranian- born mathematician who was the first woman to win the coveted Fields Medal, has died of breast cancer in a US hospital. She was 40.

Mirzakhani, a professor at Stanford University in California won the Fields Medal, the equivalent of the Nobel Prize for Mathematics in 2014.

The award recognized her sophisticated and highly original contributions to the fields of geometry and dynamical systems, particularly in understanding the symmetry of curved surfaces such as spheres.

According to Iranian state media, President Hassan Rouhani said that Mirzakhani’s “doleful passing” has caused great sorrow to all Iranians.