Elizabeth Boorman April 30, 2014

Like many books of the Renaissance, The Fabric of the Human Body is an exceptional book in both its in-depth anatomical knowledge and its collection of beautifully sketched drawings. Andreas Vesalius, the author of this 7-volume collection, gathered such detailed and extensive insight in the human anatomy that he would soon become a revolutionary figure in the field of anatomical research.

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Until that point, the Ancient Greek physician, surgeon and philosopher Galen of Pergamon’s second century work on the human anatomy had been the standard for physicians to learn about human anatomy. However, Galen based his anatomical writings on animal dissections, mostly Barbary apes. Vesalius’s book challenged many claims by using human corpses for dissection. His 250 illustrations were even bound in human skin in the original 1548 publication, an interesting statement since Vesalius’s text gave an insider’s view of what’s going on underneath the skin. By dissecting the human body, Vesalius was able to make groundbreaking observations about the human anatomy, which is why he is still considered the “father of anatomical analysis”.

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Vesalius’s 16th century drawings to today’s visualization of human anatomy

Vesalius is an inspiration to Materialise as his mission is similar to ours: to advance anatomical understanding for improved clinical outcomes. His vivid drawings brought the field of anatomy into a different era, helped physicians learn about the human body, and led to an improved understanding of human anatomy. The Mimics Innovation Suite software builds on Vesalius’s achievements, by providing a tool for doctors and researchers to visualize a specific patient’s anatomy. Materialise, particularly through its newly released Mimics 17.0 and 3-matic 9.0 updates, is celebrating the life and work of Andreas Vesalius by continuing his quest to advance anatomical understanding through Engineering on Anatomy™. Learn more about how Andreas Vesalius has inspired Materialise and the improvements in the new release of the Mimics Innovation Suite by watching the video below featuring our Biomedical Engineering Director Koen Engelborghs.

Mimics and 3-matic go far beyond mere visualization. Find out what else you can do with Mimics and  3-matic on our website.