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Morphologie. 2013 Jun;97(317):59-64. doi: 10.1016/j.morpho.2013.04.002. Epub 2013 Jun 4.

[Computerized three-dimensional reconstruction of the retrohepatic segment of inferior vena cava of a 20 mm human embryo].

[Article in French]

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Unité de recherche et développement en imagerie anatomie (URDIA), EA4465, université Paris Descartes, Paris, France.


The subdiaphragmatic venous drainage of the embryo is provided by the two caudal cardinal veins to which is added the subcardinal vein system, draining the mesonephros, the perispinal supracardinal veins and the umbilical and vitelline venous system. The anastomosis of certain segments of the embryonic venous structures and the disappearance of others are at the origin of the inferior vena cava. Since the 19th century, three-dimensional reconstruction of solid models from histological sections were developed. At present, the development of computerized three-dimensional reconstruction techniques allowed to operate a multitude of techniques of image processing and modeling in space. Three-dimensional reconstruction is a tool for teaching and research very useful in embryological studies because of the obvious difficulty of dissection and the necessity of introducing time as the fourth dimension in the study of organogenesis. This method represents a promising alternative compared to previous three-dimensional reconstruction techniques including Born technique. The aim of our work was to create a three-dimensional computer reconstruction of the retrohepatic segment of the inferior vena cava of a 20mm embryo from the embryo collection of Saints-Pères institute of anatomy (Paris Descartes university, Paris, France) to specify the path relative to the liver and initiate a series of computerized three-dimensional reconstruction that will follow the evolution of this segment of the inferior vena cava and this in a pedagogical and morphological research introducing the time as the fourth dimension.


Digital pedagogy; Embryologie de la veine cave inférieure; Inferior vena cava embryology; Pédagogie numérique; Reconstruction tridimensionnelle informatisée; Retrohepatic segment of the inferior vena cava; Segment rétrohépatique de la veine cave inférieure; Three-dimensional computerized reconstruction

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