Northern Maine Community College is joining the ranks of the world’s leading medical schools and institutions including the Mayo Clinic and Stanford.

NMCC has acquired a virtual anatomy table for use in its allied health and science courses. The table is being acclaimed as “the most technologically advanced 3-D anatomy visualization system for anatomy and physiology education.”

The interactive table allows students and instructors to explore human anatomy in-depth by virtually removing layers of tissue, making cross-sections, and isolating body systems. Each digitized body on the table comes from a person who died of different causes before being donated—one from a heart attack, two from cancer-related pneumonia, and one male inmate who died of lethal injection. The inmate, prior to his execution, was persuaded by a prison chaplain to donate his body to the Human Visibility Project (HVP) back in 1993.

Students can compare the different health factors and anomalies present in each example and are able to take customized quizzes directly on the table using touch-screen technology.

While the table is currently in the biology lab for anatomy, physiology and microbiology classes, it will also be used for emergency medical services, nursing, medical coding, liberal studies, and medical assisting students.

Funding for the new technology came from the Maine Community College System.