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Histology Movies to Watch While Quarantined

With everything from the gym, to bars and restaurants closed for Covid-19, you may find yourself at home with a lot of time on your hands. If you’re looking for something to watch, check out these shows and movies with histology Easter eggs!


1. Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez: This 3-episode documentary series explores the conviction of Patriots football player, Aaron Hernandez. Towards the end of episode 3 they begin to talk about the impact of CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy), the brain injury suffered by football players, on Aaron’s behavior. They show the slides from the tissue in Aaron’s brain, and an interview with the Chief of Neuropathology for the Boston VA Health Care System.


2. Concussion: While we’re on the subject of NFL brain injuries, Concussion is a 2015 film featuring Will Smith as a forensic pathologist who is researching chronic traumatic encephalopathy. Will Smith’s character is seen observing slides to make his conclusion that the football player died from head trauma.


3. The Fugitive: The Fugitive is a 1993 action movie with Harrison Ford and Tommy Lee Jones. Harrison Ford plays a surgeon who gets a hit put out on him by someone from a pharmaceutical company who is trying to release a drug, Provasic, that was disapproved by the FDA because of research Ford’s character did proving the drug causes liver damage. You’ll see histology slides, and hear awesome quotes like this one, “You switched the samples, And the pathology reports! You kill Lenz, too?! Huh?! Did you?! He falsified his research, so that RDU-90 could be approved and Devlin McGregor could give you... Provasic!”


4. The Andromeda Strain: This 1971 sci-fi thriller has an alien microscopic organism that kills town inhabitants in New Mexico. The government quickly enlists a top-secret research team who use electron microscopy to learn more about the organism.


5. Star Wars: The Last Jedi: The 8th episode of the Star Wars saga, released in 2017, features a cryostat, for all of the space specimens that Princess Leia is cutting. Or in case someone gets frozen in carbonite. It isn’t used in the movie, but it looks futuristic and cool in the background!


6. Bones or CSI: And then of course there are the tried and true tv lab shows where you can always count on a simplified version of a lab.

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The National Society for Histotechnology is a professional member organization for individuals actively involved in the histology profession. NSH has over 3,000 members worldwide, and is the leading provider of histology focused continuing education.  

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