With pilot funding from Jisc we embarked on Bradford’s first 3D imaging project ‘From Cemetery to Clinic’ in 2010/11 with the aim of scanning human skeletal remains that exhibited pathological lesions characteristic of leprosy. The remains from the Medieval leprosarium attached to the Hospital of St James and St Mary Magdalene, Chichester have been curated within the Biological Anthropology Research Centre at Bradford since they were excavated in the 1980s.
The 3D scans were contextualised alongside digitised copies of the original excavation archives and historic clinical radiographs from patients treated by clinical leprologist Dr Johs Anderson.
The approach was scaled up with funding from Jisc’s Mass Digitisation scheme for ‘Digitised Diseases’ – a partnership between the University of Bradford, the Royal College of Surgeons of England and MOLA/ The Museum of London. Collectively we created an open access resource that focuses on a wide range of pathological type specimens from archaeological and historic medical collections, specifically, examples of chronic diseases that affect the human skeleton for which many of the physical changes are often not directly observable within clinical practice.
To find out more and to investigate the models of ‘Digitised Diseases’ goto http://www.digitiseddiseases.org