The Digital Anatomist Project Project: Funding


Current Funding

The Digital Anatomist Project is currently supported by the National Library of Medicine grant R01 LM06316, "Structure-based Visual Access to Biomedical Information", 5/1/97-4/30/00. Jim Brinkley, Principal Investigator. Abstract:

The long term goal of the work described in this proposal is to develop on-line combined spatial and symbolic methods for representing, storing, retrieving and visualizing anatomical information, both as a means for understanding human biological structure, and as a visual gateway into the rapidly increasing array of on-line text-based information sources in biomedicine. In this proposal we will address some of the fundamental problems involved in combining spatial and symbolic anatomic information, and will test solutions to these problems in a World Wide Web based 3-D anatomy information system for the thoracic viscera. Clinicians, researchers and students will be able to use this system to retrieve specific anatomic knowledge, in the form of dynamically-generated interactive 3-D scenes and corresponding symbolic information, without the need to consult hardcopy atlases or to navigate through irrelevant computer based images before finding the needed information.

In order to build this system we will need to address fundamental problems in spatial modelling, organization of these models in a knowledge based spatial database system, and access to the models via an on-line user interface and spatial query processor. The specific aims for this proposal are: 1) develop a knowledge base that organizes and integrates spatial and symbolic models of anatomy, 2) implement an anatomy information system that combines knowledge-based spatial and symbolic retrieval with dynamically generated 3-D scenes, 3) develop methods for smoothly rendering and interacting with the scene in real-time, and 4) evaluate the system by integrating other spatial data and by providing it to anatomy medical students and radiation treatment planners.

Accomplishment of these aims will lead to a useful information system for the anatomy of the thoracic viscera that can be enhanced with new technology such as high performance graphics and virtual reality. Moreover, the information framework and methods we establish in this project will be generalizable not only to gross anatomy in different regions of the body and to different anatomical databases, but also to the management of structural information pertaining to cellular and molecular biology, as well as developmental and neurobiology.


Previous Funding