The Regenerative Medicine Partnership in Education is an interdisciplinary project led by Dr. John Pollock of Duquesne University.
The project will produce a series of innovative planetarium shows using high-tech scientific visualization to bring the audience into the human body. The effort is made possible by a Science Education Partnership Award (SEPA) from the National Center for Research Resources, part of the National Institutes of Health.
Building on the 5-film success of Dr. Pollock's previous collaborative project with the Pittsburgh Tissue Engineering Initiative, Inc. (Tissue Engineering for Life a National Center for Research Resource SEPA), the new shows expand the visual experience of exploring the biology of regenerative medicine. The goal is to develop scientifically accurate content rich in biology for young learners. All films will highlight biomedical research, specifically regenerative medicine, focusing on:
- Basic biology
- What goes wrong with disease or trauma
- Current medical therapy
- How the body heals itself through regenerative medicine
Our Cells, Our Selves is the first digital dome planetarium show in this series. The show gives children and their families an understanding of how the body protects itself from its environment and presents the evolutionary basis of the immune system and juvenile diabetes in a way that children can understand. To accompany the movies, the Regenerative Medicine Partnership in Education team has developed free, interactive Web activities, which include teacher/student workbooks and activities for the classroom and homeschoolers (www.sepa.duq.edu/education/) and a comprehensive on-line library of dynamic webchapters and tutorials (www.duq.edu/sepa/regmed/).
The team also has developed Immun-ologee, a computer game (www.sepa.duq.edu/games/). Players learn that the human immune system is a complex constellation of cells and tissues that work together to patrol the entire body. Players travel through tissue, encountering unknown particles and cells, and learn how the immune system handles what it encounters. Immun-ologee was designed for short sessions, ideally for science centers and on-line play.
The Regenerative Medicine Partnership in Education works in collaboration with:
- Department of Journalism and Interactive Media of McAnulty College and Graduate School of Liberal Arts at Duquesne University
- School of Education at Duquesne University
- Entertainment Technology Center at Carnegie Mellon University
- STUDIO for Creative Inquiry at Carnegie Mellon University
- Carnegie Science Center Buhl Planetarium/Digital Dome
- McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine
- Additional scientists, artists and physicians from other key Pittsburgh institutions