Objective: This paper reports on the alignment between two large ontologies of anatomy: the Foundational Model of Anatomy (FMA) and the representation of anatomical structures in SNOMED CT. The objective of this study is to investigate the compatibility between a reference ontology of anatomy (the FMA, 75,019 concepts) and a representation of anatomy created for use in clinical applications (SNOMED CT, 30,933 anatomical concepts).
Methods: The alignment first identifies shared concepts lexically. The presence of shared relations across ontologies is then used to validate the mappings structurally.
Results: 8,228 mappings were identified by lexical methods, of which over 97% were supported by structural evidence. No evidence was found for 0.5% of the mappings and 2.5% received negative evidence.
Conclusions: Despite important differences in coverage and knowledge representation between the FMA and SNOMED CT, we have not noticed any major discrepancies in their representation of anatomical entities.