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University and iGene collaborate to bring digital autopsy research to students

Published: Wed 4 May 2016
University and iGene collaborate to bring digital autopsy research to students

The University of Bradford has announced a partnership with leading advanced medical visualisation company iGene to develop a digital autopsy research and teaching capability unique among UK universities.

iGene has considerable experience of investigating Digital Autopsy as an alternative technique to traditional post-mortem examination.  New generation technology means it is now possible to digitise the body of the deceased using a scanning method and create detailed 3D whole body reconstructions using specialist software.  The digital visuals can then be interpreted by trained radiologists and pathologists to arrive at a cause of death.  It is said that this approach can be applied as an alternative to traditional post-mortem examination (in which a body is dissected and examined by a pathologist) in 70% of cases.

The 3D whole body reconstructions also provide valuable learning and teaching material and opportunities for research in big data science.  The University of Bradford/iGene partnership will incorporate iGene Digital Autopsy software environment and expertise into the Integrated Life Sciences Learning Centre (ILSLC), Faculty of Life Sciences.   The iGene C3DEVER solution has been installed in the ILSLC.  This will provide access to an archive of anonymised, 3D whole body data set reconstructed which can be used to demonstrate particular diseases/pathological processes: an invaluable resource for students undertaking Life Sciences and Healthcare related degrees.  It will also support the development of integrated Physiology, Anatomy, Archaeology and Pathology learning resources for our students; employing state-of-the-art digital technology to promote inter-professional learning and research.

Dr Samar Betmouni, Director of Clinical Pathology at the University, said: “I am very much looking forward to working with colleagues at iGene on this project.  The partnership with iGene further strengthens the Faculty of Life Sciences capability in digital pathology, and it will provide our students with access to emerging technology and new models of pathology service delivery”

Dr Keren Bielby-Clarke, Lecturer in Life Sciences Simulation, commented: “The addition of the iGene table and our future partnership with iGene will enhance our ability to provide truly cutting-edge learning facilities, available to students across a wide range of life science and health-related programs. The use of such resources and links to practice, and the direct integration into our undergraduate and postgraduate programs, is another demonstration of our enhancement of teaching methods through technology and experience-driven learning.”

Matt Chandran, CEO of iGene, added:  “Big data science, computational capabilities coupled with unique functionalities for information extraction and value creation in medical practice, research and education is the ultimate aim of this collaboration with the University of Bradford. We are delighted about this partnership as it is a shared vision and work by both entities.”

The Integrated Life Sciences Learning Centre (ILSLC) is based in the Faculty of Life Sciences and houses a simulation suite with a human patient simulator and 3D virtual anatomy and physiology dissection anatomage table.  The ILSLC also houses a new Anatomy and Pathology Resource Centre which students can use to examine model and real anatomy specimens as part of their studies.

Students have unique access to these new facilities to support their learning in anatomy and pathology.

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