"Mummies have been objects of horror in popular culture since the early 1800s more than a century before Boris Karloff portrayed an ancient Egyptian searching for his lost love in the 1932 film "The Mummy." Public "unwrappings of real mummified human remains performed by both showmen and scientists heightened the fascination, but also helped develop the growing science of Egyptology." - newswire.
An article about the research of Dr Kathleen Sheppard of the Missouri University of Science and Technology.
If you are interested in this area, there is also a piece on showmanship and scientific paradox of the unwrappings in the nineteenth century in 'Unwrapping the Past: Egyptian Mummies on Show' in Popular Exhibitions, Science and Showmanship 1840 - 1910 (eds. Joe Kember, John Plunkett and jill A Sullivan (2012). Pickering and Chatto. Author: Beverley J. Rogers.
See blog post on 29 May 2012.