Integrated pedagogical, diagnostic and scientific work is carried out in the Department of Pathological Anatomy of the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences.


  • To carry out high-quality pathology studies, providing research-based state of the art knowledge and technology, reflecting higher university education and higher education qualifications, to develop a fully educated, ethically responsible, creative personality.
  • To carry out high-level pathology research, to train scientists.
  • To improve the quality of pathology diagnostic services by successfully implementing the latest technologies and to carry out a wide range of pathology practice activities.


After the establishment of the University of Lithuania on 16 February 1922, following its Statute adopted by the Seimas on 22 April 1922 (20 departments are provided for in the structure of the Medical Department of the Faculty of Medicine), the Council of the Faculty of Medicine elected Emilis Vinteleris as the Head of the Department of General Pathology and Pathological Anatomy, on 30 June 1922. He arrived in Kaunas and began to give lectures on 29 January 1923. On 18 September 1922, the Council of the Faculty of Medicine temporarily entrusted the Department to Professor Leonas Gogelis (until the arrival of the elected leader), for the role of the Senior Assistant the Council selected Dr. Janina Mackevičaitė, Vice-Rector – Kazys Oželis. The Department of General Pathology and Pathological Anatomy has been established in the Military Hospital of the University of Lithuania (since 7 June 1930 Vytautas Magnus University) in the 2nd Building since the spring of 1923. The material base of both studies and pathology diagnostics and the Museum of Macropreparations are intensively developed. Janina Mackevičaitė-Lašienė translated into Lithuanian and in 1925 is published Herxheimer’s General Pathology Framework textbook (this was the second publication of the Faculty of Medicine). In December 1932, the Department moved to the newly built Faculty of Medicine Building on Mickevičius Street. Studies were being conducted here, surgical and biotic material was being investigated, autopsies were performed mainly at the Lithuanian Red Cross Society Hospital.

In the summer of 1939, when the new Clinics (Hospital) of the University were completed, the Department of General Pathology and Pathological Anatomy were established in a separate building (the current building). When professor E. Vinteleris announced his intention to move to Germany, on 12 February 1941,the position of the Head of the Department of Pathological Anatomy and Pathological Anatomy was elected Senior Lecturer Janina Mackevičaitė-Lašienė. On August 9, 1941, the Head of the Department (the provisional Government of Lithuania restored the old name of Vytautas Magnus University on 1 July 1941) was elected Associate Professor Dr. Antanas Starkus, who was taken to Stutthof concentration camp on 16 March 1943. Under the direction of the department of Prof. Janina Lašienė in 1944-1965, not only pedagogical activity is carried out, but also pathology diagnostics work is actively carried out, the Lithuanian Pathology Service is established, in 1954, the scientific society of Lithuanian Pathologobanatomic (presently the Lithuanian Scientific Society of Pathologists) is established, the department becomes the main centre of training of Pathology Doctors. The professor dedicated all her scientific activities to endocrine gland research and created a school of functional morphology of endocrine glands. In 1965–1976, the department was headed by Prof. Jūratė Jankevičiūtė, who has devoted many years to cardiac pathology, published the first Lithuanian textbook on Pathological Anatomy (1973). In 1976, the head of the department was selected Prof. Elena Stalioraitytė, who together with Prof. Janina Lašienė has been involved in endocrine problems research: Their monograph “Endocrine Glands of Newborns” was awarded the Lithuanian State Prize in 1972. During this period, particular attention was paid to the improvement of the pedagogical process, introducing the elements of problem learning, preparing and publishing a lot of educational books, the new edition of the textbook on Pathological Anatomy (1986), and conducting research on sudden cardiac death. In 1984-1988, the Department was merged with the Department of Histology-Embryology (headed by Prof. Albertas Vitkus), and in 1988-1992 – with the Department of Forensic Medicine (in 1988-1989 it was headed by Prof. Jonas Nainys, in 1989-1992 – Prof. Romualdas Gailys).

The current Department of Pathological Anatomy was established in 1992 by merging the department with the unit and connecting the Cytological Diagnostic Service. Prof. Kazys Daukša was chosen as its Head. In 2003-2009, the Department was led by Prof. Romualdas Gailys.

The history of the Department of Pathological Anatomy is remembered from 1922. Books of autopsy and biopsy examination, the most important manuscripts, various documents of pathology studies and practice, copies of all textbooks and educational books, equipment of that time, all of which can be found in the Department.

Clinical activity

More than 35,000 biopsies and surgical materials are performed in the Department of Pathological Anatomy, close to 60,000 cytological, and over 100 autopsy studies. Not only are biopsies and operating materials of patients of Kaunas Clinics Hospital of the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences performed, but also material is obtained from other personal healthcare institutions.

In response to the increasing quality requirements of the patient’s diagnostic treatment, the Department constantly implements promising technologies for pathology research, all available equipment meets today’s global standards. In addition to routine and special painting methods, the use of immunohistochemical (more than 100 markers using Roche Ventana automatic processors) testing methods have been significantly expanded. In recent years, methods of molecular pathology are increasingly used, which are necessary not only for the determination of modern diagnosis, but also for the selection of individualised treatment.

Automated whole process of tissue preparation for examination (pre-analytical stage), the information system of patient pathology analysis (in Lithuanian), which includes both the stages of formation of tissue preparation (laboratory work) and the conclusion of the study itself (macroscopic, histological, other additional), is implemented by the efforts of the clinic’s employees, allows to achieve modern standards of pathology examination. A quality management system for pathology tests has been implemented.

Pathology doctors monitor the structural changes of tissues with modern optical microscopes with documentation equipment.

A lot of attention is paid to the study of pathology of programmes for prevention of colon, breast, cervical, prostate cancer.

All biological samples shall be stored in accordance with the standards of the pathology testing (more than 10 years) and shall always be available for re-evaluation or additional examination.

A lot of attention is paid to the post-graduate development of pathologists: daily discussion of patients’ pathology diagnostics is taking place; doctors are constantly participating in events organised by professional societies in Lithuania and Europe and presenting reports.

Together with the doctors of other profile departments (Surgery, Gastroenterology, Skin and Venereal Diseases, etc.) of the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences Kaunas Clinics Hospital, there is a constant discussion of diagnostic complex patients with multi-head discussion microscope, together with pathology and various clinical studies, including various tissue imaging, it is conventional and digital dermatoscopy, siascopy, ultrasound, radionuclide diagnostics, computer tomography, nuclear magnetic resonance imaging and their juxtaposition.

The colleagues of the Department are actively involved in the preparation of the legal framework regulating the activities of the Lithuanian pathology service and the quality of pathology research.

Pathological Anatomy – the unifying discipline of fundamental sciences and clinical practice. This study provides an insight into the changes in the structure of organs, tissues and cells caused by pathological processes and diseases of a human, their aetiology, the mechanisms of formation (pathogenesis) and functional (clinical) importance – which provide basic knowledge for further development of the diagnostic and treatment basics. The study of general (pathological processes) and systemic, or nosological (diseases) pathological anatomy is carried out.

Students of the medical programme acquire the following knowledge of pathological anatomy in years 2 and 3, deepening their knowledge into integrated modules of problem studies: the basics of preclinical studies, reproductive health, fundamentals of neuroscience, immune response and infection, breathing and blood circulation, material absorption and homoeostasis. The Department of Pathological Anatomy is responsible for the Immune Response and Infection Immune Response module.

Students of the Odontology Programme master the necessary knowledge of pathology, the links between the causes and consequences of pathological processes, in order to understand the morphological substrate of pathological processes and diseases and the mechanisms of their occurrence and the clinical importance of the third year.

Students of Medical and Veterinary Genetics and Medical and Veterinary Biochemistry take up the morphological substrate of pathological processes in the second year, delve into the molecular mechanisms and clinical importance of their occurrence, acquire the basics of morphological and molecular diagnostics of tissue changes.

By studying the subject of pathology (consisting of pathological anatomy and pathological physiology) oral hygiene (year 2), nursing and obstetrics (year 1), physiotherapy and occupational therapy (year 2), students get acquainted with the morphological substrate and mechanisms of the general pathological processes and some diseases.

Students of the Medical Programme learn more about the possibilities of pathology diagnosis by studying clinical pathology and forensic medicine in the 4th year.

The fully renovated study base of the Department has a modern equipped audience named after Janina Lašienė for streaming lectures, seminars and tutorial sessions. The practice rooms are equipped with demonstration-consulting microscopes with optical bridges, high-resolution digital cameras and 60’’ monitors and binocular educational microscopes for group and individual student work. A server system for virtual study of histological preparations is installed. Students develop skills in the fundamentals of tissue imaging analysis using Media Cybernetics ImagePro software.

The Department of Pathological Anatomy has a museum of more than 2000 macroscopic preparations, prepared collections of tissue histological preparations using routine and special histochemical painting methods, immunohistochemical and hybridization in situ reactions. All of this enables not only a deeper understanding of pathological processes and structural changes in diseases, but also an understanding of the diagnostic possibilities of modern pathology.

The Department of Pathological Anatomy combines traditional lectures, practice of microscopic and histological preparations and electron studies, observation of autopsy and diagnostic biopsies, and modern technologies – virtual histopathology (telepathology). These are images of the entire histological section (glass), which is studied during the practice work. Their maximum resolution is the same as that of a standard optical microscope for large magnification and is intended not only for independent study of pathology, but also as a freely available and optional alternative to traditional histological preparations on glass panes during practice.

During the study of pathological anatomy, the elements of problem learning have been applied for more than three decades in solving simulated morphological diagnostic tasks consisting of microscopic and histological preparations and electron kits. Special attention is paid to independent work. To this end, the descriptions of all the practice works have been updated.

For students of all study programmes, the educational material (textbook of interactive studies “Fundamental Pathology”, Atlas of Histopathology (Lithuanian and English), instructions on practice, individual parts of the textbook of pathological anatomy, etc.) is digitized and available online.

Studies of Pathology Residency (4 years) and other residency programmes are constantly being conducted in the Department of Pathological Anatomy, where the basics of diagnostics of pathology of various diseases are studied.

The lecturers of the Department teach elective subjects, direct the research work of students and participate in doctoral studies. There is a post-graduate training of doctors.

The lecturers are constantly improving their teaching through the experience of international universities.

Department of Pathological Anatomy lecturers pathology doctors are involved in the implementation of integrated studies of diagnosis, treatment and prognosis of diseases (modern diagnosis of pathology of diseases is part of these studies) according to the profile of the diagnostic tests they perform: Brain tumours, lungs, breast, cervix, digestive tract, tumour and non-tumour lesions of the localisation of the liver, thyroid, skin, etc., using modern methods of pathology diagnostics (molecular and gene expression at the protein level).

Department of Pathological Anatomy
Assoc. Prof. Lina Poškienė
Head of the Department of Pathological Anatomy
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