The Perelman School of Medicine Launches Online 3D Anatomy Courses in Collaboration with Elsevier and Sharecare Reality Lab

Courses on The Thorax and The Embryology of the Heart and Lung Currently Available with Additional Courses Scheduled for 2017

Philadelphia, PA, October 11, 2016

The Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania today announced the launch of a new collaboration to offer online 3D anatomy courses to students worldwide. The courses have been developed in collaboration with Elsevier, a world-leading provider of scientific, technical and medical information products and services, and Sharecare Reality Lab, a digital health company that provides visual solutions for health care.

Penn’s anatomy faculty developed the course content using images from Elsevier’s benchmark Netter Atlas of Human Anatomy, Gray’s Anatomy for Students, Larson’s Human Embryology and Sharecare Reality Lab’s sophisticated digital 3D-anatomic simulations.

“Penn has been a pioneer in the use of digital media in medical education for more than 20 years. We were one of the first medical schools to provide online streaming of its entire curriculum. The new courses further Penn’s vision of a school without walls,” said Gail Morrison, MD, Senior Vice Dean for Education in the Perelman School of Medicine. “Along with the prestige of our brand and our phenomenal teachers, we will continue to create innovative ways to educate online as we move into teaching the next generation of students embarking on medical careers.”

The idea for Penn’s paid course offerings began three years ago when Penn was among other medical schools that provided free courses known as MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses). One of Penn’s offerings was an anatomy course on the upper limb called ‘Going out on a Limb,’ which attracted more than 39,000 students. Feedback from the enrollees requested similar courses on the other areas of human anatomy.

“This collaboration provides an opportunity to share high-quality images and high-level anatomy content with students worldwide who may not have the time or access to medical courses but have the willingness to learn,” said Linda Belfus, Senior Vice President for Content, Elsevier Clinical Solutions.

Two courses will be offered in October 2016: The Thorax, with nine hours of lecture, will launch on Oct. 11, 2016, and will cost $115; and The Embryology of the Heart and Lung, with five hours of lecture,will launch on Oct.18, 2016 and will cost $55. Each course will be open for eight weeks. Upon completion of each course, students will be eligible to receive a certificate of completion from the Perelman School of Medicine. Courses on the abdomen, pelvis, back, extremities, and brain will be available in 2017.

“The YOU(R) platform from Sharecare Reality Lab makes the anatomy courses very unique, providing learners with the ability to see, in three dimensions, living organs and how the human body functions physiologically,” said Lawrence Kiey, president of Sharecare Reality Lab, part of the Sharecare family.

“Sharecare Reality Lab’s collaboration with the Perelman School of Medicine is changing the way people learn. By making anatomy visual, we are improving one’s overall understanding of how the body functions. Something you can never get from a cadaver,” Morrison said.

For additional information on Penn’s online anatomy courses, visit


About Penn Medicine
Penn Medicine is one of the world's leading academic medical centers, dedicated to the related missions of medical education, biomedical research, and excellence in patient care. Penn Medicine consists of the Raymond and Ruth Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania (founded in 1765 as the nation's first medical school) and the University of Pennsylvania Health System, which together form a $5.3 billion enterprise. The Perelman School of Medicine has been ranked among the top five medical schools in the United States for the past 18 years, according to U.S. News & World Report's survey of research-oriented medical schools. The School is consistently among the nation's top recipients of funding from the National Institutes of Health, with $373 million awarded in the 2015 fiscal year.

The University of Pennsylvania Health System's patient care facilities include: The Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and Penn Presbyterian Medical Center -- which are recognized as one of the nation’s top "Honor Roll" hospitals by U.S. News & World Report -- Chester County Hospital; Lancaster General Health; Penn Wissahickon Hospice; and Pennsylvania Hospital -- the nation’s first hospital, founded in 1751. Additional affiliated inpatient care facilities and services throughout the Philadelphia region include Chestnut Hill Hospital and Good Shepherd Penn Partners, a partnership between Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Network and Penn Medicine. Penn Medicine is committed to improving lives and health through a variety of community-based programs and activities. In fiscal year 2015, Penn Medicine provided $253.3 million to benefit our community.

About Sharecare Reality Lab
Sharecare Reality Lab is a digital health company committed to making health visual and providing solutions for effective visual communications who merges science, art, and technology to simplify and amplify understanding at all levels of the healthcare. For additional information, visit

About Elsevier
Elsevier is a global information analytics business that helps scientists and clinicians to find new answers, reshape human knowledge, and tackle the most urgent human crises. For 140 years, we have partnered with the research world to curate and verify scientific knowledge. Today, we’re committed to bringing that rigor to a new generation of platforms. Elsevier provides digital solutions and tools in the areas of strategic research management, R&D performance, clinical decision support, and professional education; including ScienceDirect, Scopus, SciVal, ClinicalKey and Sherpath. Elsevier publishes over 2,500 digitized journals, including The Lancet and Cell, 39,000 e-book titles and many iconic reference works, including Gray's Anatomy. Elsevier is part of RELX, a global provider of information-based analytics and decision tools for professional and business customers.

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