Babel VR is a free software tool for the HTC Vive that allows the import of 3D images from a variety of medical devices - different 3D image modalities including microscopes, ultrasound, Computer Aided Tomography (CAT), MRI scanners - so they can be viewed and interacted with in a virtual reality (VR) environment.

About BabelVR

Video 1: Babel VR - Abdominal Aortic Aneurism Planning

Understanding and interacting with 3D biological imaging data is key to understanding biological mechanisms. Biological objects both at the macro and micro level often have complex and 3D architectures which are often difficult to interpret, measure and manipulate using traditional 2D software. We present BabelVR as a novel way to work with biological object(s) by using Virtual Reality to immerse the user in a 3D cockpit where multiple images from mixed modalities may be examined and interacted with. We demonstrate functionality that would be slow and difficult to do in traditional packages using it to measure complex 3D features to understand genotype/phenotype relationships in the skull, designing experiments in mixed modality correlative microscopy and 3D ultrasound time series visualization. BabelVR demonstrates VR’s efficacy in complex biological use cases beyond a traditional 3D viewer.

  • Manipulate multiple 3D objects in VR
  • Many functions for adjusting image views
  • 3D annotation
  • 3D measurements
  • Import meshes from results of segmentation / machine learning


Video 2: Babel VR - Loading and adjusting cutoffs - [ YouTube ]
Courtesy of Hana Mlcochova / Steve Twigg MRC WIMM

Video 3: Babel VR - Annotating a mouse skull - [ YouTube ]
Courtesy of Hana Mlcochova / Steve Twigg MRC WIMM

BabelVR Screenshots:

Measuring the length of the aorta from the heart
Contouring a kidney for segmentation
Visualising dividing Hela Cells (Chris Lagerholm)