New 4D imaging application developed

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Canadian researchers have developed a movable 4D image that could be useful for physicians in planning for sophisticated surgical procedures. The technology, dubbed CAVEman, includes over 3,000 portions of the body presented in 4D within which can be viewed in a booth-like contraption, Reuters reports.

The technology, developed by researchers at the University of Calgary Faculty of Medicine, can make use of images from a variety of modalities, including MRI, CT scans and x-rays. The dynamic, high-resolution image hovers before you in the booth. CAVEman has been designed to aid research in understanding the genetics of diseases such as cancer, diabetes, muscular sclerosis and Alzheimer's.

"Today, this kind of a model is unique in the world. It's the only one that is complete. We have components of models," Christoph Sensen, director of the medical school's Sun Center of Excellence for Visual Genomics, told Reuters. "We could make this thing with 50 different brains because everybody makes their own brain model. What we didn't have was a whole, complete body."

CAVEman is a technological descendant of the 3D virtual reality "Cave," a lab the Sun Center opened jointly in 2002 in conjunction with Sun Microsystems Inc.