Erfinder der Plastination. Schöpfer der Körperwelten.
Gunther von Hagens, the creator of Plastination, began his medical studies at the University of Jena in 1965. He was arrested after he had distributed leaflets protesting against the invasion of Czechoslovakia by Warsaw Pact troops and soon thereafter had tried to flee from East Germany. Finally, in 1970, only after the West German government had bought his freedom as well as that of other political prisoners was he able
to continue his studies at the University of Lübeck, which he completed there in 1973. In 1974, he received his license to practice medicine before moving to the University of Heidelberg, where he completed his doctorate in the Department of Anesthetics and Emergency Medicine in 1975. He subsequently worked at the Institutes of Anatomy and Pathology.
It was in Heidelberg starting in 1977 that he invented the basic technologies for forced infusion of anatomical specimens with reactive plastics especially developed for this purpose. It was also in Heidelberg in 1980 that he founded BIODUR® Products to market the respective polymers and equipment; finally, he founded the Institute for Plastination in 1993.
In 1995 he launched the BODY WORLDS, anatomical exhibitions of real human bodies. BODY WORLD exhibitions have now travelled globally and have been seen by more than 35 million people worldwide.
1996 he was appointed a visiting professor at the School of Medicine in Dalian in China and Director of the Plastination Center at the State Medical Academy
in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, where he was awarded the title of an honorary professor. Since 2004, he is a visiting professor at the New York University College of Dentistry.
In November 2006, he established the Gubener Plastinate GmbH, a plastination laboratory in Guben, Germany. Set to be the world’s leading Plastination research, development and preparation facility, it will also promote the cause of public anatomy by granting access to the general public to watch the preparation of permanently preserved, anatomical human and animal specimens. The Gubener plastinate GmbH is a natural extension of Dr. von Hagens’ thirty year career as an anatomist and advocate of public health and public anatomy.