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BODY WORLDS Anatomical Exhibitions of Donor Bodies Receives 28 Millionth Visitor.

LOS ANGELES, July 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Gunther von Hagens' BODY WORLDS, the original anatomical exhibitions of real human bodies received their 28 millionth visitor on Sunday, July 19th, 2009. Now showing at museums around the world, the six editions of the exhibitions--curated 'chapters' from anatomist, Dr. Gunther von Hagens' "HUMAN SAGA" project--have broken attendance records at every stop of their international tour.

The only anatomical exhibitions with an established body donation program, the exhibits have compelled legions of people around the world to participate in what the organizers call a joint work. "It is a collaboration between donor, anatomist, and visitor, some even agree it's a joint quest towards enlightenment," said Dr. Angelina Whalley, planner and designer of the exhibitions.

BODY WORLDS made its debut in Tokyo in 1995 and has toured more than 50 cities in Europe, Asia, and North America since then. Visitor comment books inside the exhibitions, now numbered in the thousands, record a litany of thoughts by the public about the post-mortal bodies on display. The musings run the gamut from simple to profound--observations about the function and form of the human body, resolutions about health, aspirations about life, debates on evolution vs. creationism, meditations on death and dying, raging commentary about when life begins, religious musings, and spirited exchanges between pro-choice and pro-life visitors. "BODY WORLDS teaches visitors about the fragility and importance of the body and makes people aware of their own mortality. To my surprise, it also inadvertently inspires religious and philosophical reflection and insights," said Dr. von Hagens.

The exhibitions are made possible by plastination, Dr. von Hagens' patented invention for preserving anatomical specimens that allow them to be displayed outside a clinical setting. "Every physician, at one time or another, is struck by the sheer elegance and intricacy of the human body. But few laypersons get a chance to experience such wonder. [BODY WORLDS ] is a rare opportunity for the layperson to share in this privileged view of ourselves," said Dr. Neil S. Wenger MD of UCLA Medical School after viewing the exhibit in Los Angeles.

BODY WORLDS is currently showing in Berlin and Augsburg in Germany; Haifa, Israel; London, UK; and Buffalo, NY and San Diego, CA in the US.

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