© BrainNet Europe II
BrainNet Europe is a "Network of Excellence" funded by the European Commission in the 6th Framework Program "Life Science" (LSHM-CT-2004-503039). It consists of 19 established brain banks across Europe and is coordinated by the Centre for Neuropathology and Prion Research Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich, Germany.
|London (Kings College), UK|
Participant 09: London Institute of Psychiatry
Department of Clinical Neuropathology
Academic Neuroscience Centre
King's College Hospital
The London Brain Bank for Neurodegenerative Diseases is situated in the Department of Clinical Neuroscience at the Institute of Psychiatry, King's College London. It is part-funded by the Medical Research Council (UK). The mission of the Brain Bank is to provide clinically and neuropathologically well-characterised human brain tissue to the neuroscience community. This involves the systematic and focussed collection of post-mortem material and its subsequent distribution to research groups both nationally and internationally.
The Brain Bank was established in 1989 and initially concentrated on the collection of Alzheimer's disease (AD) brains. This principally reflected the research needs of a large Neurodegeneration Interdisciplinary Research Group (IRG) at the Institute investigating the clinical course, epidemiology, neuropathology, biochemistry and molecular genetics of AD. Subsequently, other neurodegenerative disorders including frontotemporal dementias (FTD), dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB), prion diseases and motor neurone disease (MND) have been investigated by researchers at the Institute and patients with these disorders have been assessed prospectively and, in many cases, referred to the Brain Bank for donation. The Brain Bank now has a large archival collection of material from over 1500 fixed cases, and over 500 cases with fresh tissue available from a wide variety of neurodegenerative and psychiatric conditions.
The clinical and pathological classification of patients and brain tissue is of the highest importance to the Brain Bank. As such, standardised criteria for the clinical and pathological diagnosis of various degenerative disorders are applied where appropriate. These common standards of categorisation allow for tissue exchange between different centres and multi-centre studies. The Brain Bank adheres firmly to the principle of best practice. Fully informed, written consent for a postmortem examination and removal of tissue for medical research is obtained before death from the patient and/or family. At the time of death, consent is re-affirmed with the family of the patient. Arrangements are made for postmortem examination and brain donation so that these can be undertaken with the minimum of delay. For many biochemical and molecular studies it is important that the tissue is removed, examined, processed, and frozen within a short period of time, preferably within 24 hours.
After microscopic examination and diagnosis, brain tissue is made available to researchers in medical and basic science throughout the United Kingdom and abroad who are engaged in studies to understand the mechanisms underlying AD and other neurological and psychiatric disorders.
For further information, please click onto the Webpage link: http://www.iop.kcl.ac.uk/brainbank
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