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Brain Donation

brain donationMany people consider body or tissue donation but have you considered brain donation?

Brain donation to the Douglas-Bell Canada Brain Bank provides national and international researchers with the necessary brain tissue; cells, proteins, and genes to study neurodegenerative and psychiatric diseases.

Both healthy and unhealthy brains are required to provide the brain tissue for researchers to strive to understand mental and neurological disorders such as Alzheimer Disease, Parkinson Disease, frontotemporal dementia, Pick disease, and the biological factors associated with mood disorders, and suicide.

The Douglas – Bell Canada Brain Bank, established in 1980, is a 24/7 operation of nearly 3000 autopsied human brain specimens.

If people wish to donate their brain after they die, an autopsy will be done to confirm the clinical diagnosis.  The family doctor or the attending physician can provide the necessary information and consent form.  Once the neuropathology is completed and the clinical diagnosis confirmed, then the brain tissue can be donated to the brain bank.  Brain tissue cannot be sold and is used solely for research purposes. The Douglas-Bell Canada Brain Bank employs personnel who are qualified to handle human tissue samples, protect donor rights, and maintain the highest ethical standards of operation. If you wish more information, you can email brain.bank@douglas.mcgill.ca

The donation of brain tissue does not impact on the funeral choices.  If the deceased wanted an open casket during visitation, this is still possible if the brain has been donated.

Donating brain tissue can assist in the advancement of neurological and psychiatric research, leading to potential treatments and cures.  If you would like more information please contact the Alzheimer Society of Ontario  at 1-800-879-4226, or via email at staff@alzheimeront.org.

You may contact The Brain donation staff via email at crnd.secr@utoronto.ca or crnd.admin@utoronto.ca

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Until next time,


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