Biolucida for Medical Education


Biolucida® for Medical Education

Enrich Your Medical Education Courses

Enrich your medical education course by using Biolucida: an interactive learning management software developed in collaboration with leading medical educators. Biolucida simulates the experience of using a microscope that can focus through Z, and gives educators a vehicle to reach more students and deliver more dynamic and rich content. Hundreds of students can use Biolucida simultaneously so you can use it even in your largest class. 

Many medical educators use virtual slides (high-resolution digital images of tissue specimens) instead of microscopes to teach histology and histopathology. However, many different methods are used to acquire virtual slides, and distributing the slides to students for lectures, course work, and tests can be cumbersome and slow. Here are some unique ways that Biolucida goes above and beyond to create a learning environment where communication thrives. 

  • Robust, high-performance slide viewing for large and small classes – Whether you have 10 students or 200 students in a class, they will all be able to quickly access full resolution slides at the same time. No more breaks in the conversation in order to wait for images to load, and no need to stagger exam times for large classes
  • Directed, rich content – Direct others to specific slides and anatomies in a laboratory or test - Use annotations & bookmarks to highlight and navigate to specific structures within slides and external educational content.
  • Flexible, integrated testing environments – Virtual slides viewing can easily be directly integrated in most educational platforms, including Blackboard, Moodle, and Canvas for a seamless, fully-functioned testing experience. 
  • Stimulate discussion by including new and rare specimens – Biolucida supports slides acquired with most commercial slide scanners and microscopes so you can use your entire collection and protect precious rare glass specimens from potential breakage. You can also easily share specimens with other educators as well as utilize any part of the MBF slide collection.


More than 150,000 students have used Biolucida for Medical Education to study histology and histopathology


During the COVID-19 pandemic, MBF Bioscience is making images in the Iowa Virtual Slidebox freely available to students and educators using web browsers and our Biolucida viewer application. For the next 90 days, you can immediately access this widely used slide collection.

Access the collection








Customer Reviews

"It was so helpful to have Biolucida already in place with the pandemic and move to online instruction. Everything worked so smoothly!"
Dr. Sarah Werning, Associate Professor of Anatomy
Des Moines University
"Biolucida is an amazing platform for using virtual histology in medical education that I have been using to aid my teaching practices for years. The medical students have also shown great interest in your virtual slides and that has helped them achieve better results - findings that I have also published."
Marko Kostovski, MD, PhD
University Ss Cyril and Methodius in Skopje
"Our experience with the MBF equipment and especially the MBF people has been outstanding. I cannot speak any higher about their professionalism and attention for our needs."
Bogdan A. Stoica, M.D.
University of Maryland
"MBF provides excellent technical support and helps you to find the best technical tools for your research challenges on morphometry."
Wilma Van De Berg, Ph.D.
VU University Medical Center - Neuroscience Campus Amsterdam


Good communication is the key to an effective and inspiring course. Educators have complete control over how to use virtual slides to communicate concepts and ideas to students.

  • Manage the student experience - Set permissions so students can only view a select group of slides, turn off slide navigation functions, turn off annotations, etc.
  • Customizable slide organization - Use tags, bookmarks, or your course website to organize images for lectures and course material
  • Integrate supplemental material - Include links to websites, videos, etc. to further explain the subject matter
  • View slides on any device - Biolucida allows students to view slides on a full spectrum of computing devices, including PCs, Macs, Apple and Android phones and tablets.

Pre-Eminent Educational Organizations Rely on Biolucida

Leading organizations and institutions around the world use Biolucida for virtual microscopy and whole slide imaging resources.

Case Study 1: The American Association of Anatomists chose Biolucida as the best technology platform to provide educators and researchers around the world with free access to a database of whole slide images (also known as virtual slides) for histology and pathology. Featuring thousands of virtual slides contributed by 15 universities, The Virtual Microscopy Database, VMD, ( is an online resource that allows educators to view and download virtual images and share their own. Powered by Biolucida® for Medical Education, VMD gives educators an overview of individual slides and allows examination of various parts of the image at magnifications up to 40x. The users can take a screenshot or download the file at any time. With thousands of freely accessible virtual microscopy images, the VMD helps meet a growing need for better access to histology slides among educators and non-profit research organizations.

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Case Study 2: Munich Medical School Takes Learning Online with Biolucida During COVID-1 - At one of the largest universities in Europe, Ludwig-Maximilians University of Munich, educators have adopted Biolucida for Medical Education for their educational needs. With the help of Biolucida, Prof. Schmitz of Ludwig-Maximilians University was able to move his collection of high-resolution 3D brain sections off of campus servers and to the cloud, giving him and his 460 students the ability to continue studies with unprecedented flexibility!

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Behind the simple user interface lies a smart and efficient software architecture that stores an immense amount of data in a small footprint, and serves it very quickly and reliably. 

  • Small footprint - Only one copy of the virtual slide lives on the server, significantly saving precious server space
  • Quick image viewing and navigation - High-resolution virtual copies of the one master file are served to users to annotate, organize, etc. so you don't have to wait for image streaming or image uploads
  • Integrates with existing IT infrastructure - Save money by using existing servers in your institution

Try it yourself. Download the free Biolucida Viewer.



Additional Technical Information

  • Compatible with whole slide images from all commercial slide scanners
  • Supports 3D focusable virtual slides 
  • Supports confocal image stacks
  • The free Biolucida Viewer is compatible with PC or Mac 
  • Runs on any 64-bit version of windows and on OSX 10.9 or greater
  • The web-viewer works with any standard browser (chrome, firefox, safari, etc)
  • Biolucida server runs on Linux or Windows
  • Requires OpenGL acceleration to render vector graphics


Watch a Sample of a Lecture Given with Biolucida


Professional Technical Support

When you call us you will speak with a person - not an automated system. Talk to us about your hardware, software, or experimental design questions. Our team includes Ph.D. neuroscientists and experts in microscopy, stereology, neuron tracing, and image processing; ready to help you over the phone or online.

Watch These Webinars About Biolucida

Exploring Big Data Microscopy
Exploring Big Data Microscopy
Using Biolucida Cloud for Creating & Utilizing Educational Material for Medicine & Science
Using Biolucida Cloud for Creating & Utilizing Educational Material for Medicine & Science
Webinar: Biolucida Cloud
Exploring Biolucida

We can also custom develop for you

MBF is proud to help bioscience leaders and experts push the next wave of innovation and discovery to benefit humanity. Given this, it’s possible you’re looking for customized technology for your needs. If that is the case, click here to get in touch with us directly. We’d be happy and honored to see if we can create something together that will move all of us forward.

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