Brain, dura, skull, spine/ spinal cord, neural cell clusters/ ganglia and CSF are available, as may specific nerves / neuromuscular junctions. Please note that the gut is also particularly rich in neural tissue, and is reported to share certain CNS characteristics, if you would like to examine another set of nerves for comparison.
Brain tissue can be shipped fresh, frozen, in 10% NBF or FFPE - please see below for an explanation of availability, depending on the tissue type.
Brains from neurologically normal donors, as well as from donors with neurological diseases, can be provided whole or can be provided sectioned.
Tumor tissue types:
Brain tumor samples, such as glioblastoma, glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) and astrocytoma are already banked in our partner clinical biorepository tumor brain banks.
The amount of normal tissue available from clinical donors is naturally small, if there is any available at all, due the the need to minimize any unnecessary tissue damage.
There may also be abcess, cyst or blastomycosis samples available (these are all very rare) or other infections of the CNS, where CSF collection is required for diagnosis.
These brain tumor tissues are available as FFPE sections or FFPE blocks, or as frozen tissue aliquots. These samples are from clinical donors, and usually have matched FFPE, frozen, serum, plasma and buffy coat from each donor.
CSF may be available, for conditions where this needs to be removed for diagnostic analysis & some is surplus to diagnostic requirements.
Post mortem brain & other tissues
Central Nervous System (CNS)
- including brain & spinal cord, as well as the skull & spine/ particular vertabrae.
Peripheral Nervous System (PNS)
- including the Somatic Nervous System (SoNS) and the Autonomic Nervous System (ANS) (sympathetic & parasympathetic systems) tissue samples
Normal brains and brain tissue samples / other nervous tissue samples can be banked for you prospectively, as well as brains from donors with stroke, dementia, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's Disease & other diseases, although donors with degenerative diseases do not present regularly. We collect prospectively according to your specifications, rather than operating a standing brain bank.
Post mortem interval:
The shortest possible time between death and brain tissue or other neural tissue removal is approximately 3 hours, but donors will be available much more frequently if you can go up to 12 hours or more between death and neural tissue removal.
Brains and brain samples are available fresh, frozen or fixed in 10% NBF. Tissues may be frozen whole at -80, flash frozen in liquid Nitrogen, or flash frozen in liquid Nitrogen vapor. The brain can also be sliced at 1cm intervals on a teflon-coated Aluminium plate and frozen in liquid Nitrogen vapor, in order to maximize the tissues' utility for histology. We will always do our best to facilitate any processing requests - please contact us to discuss further.
Please note: apart from brain tumors specimens from clinical donors, we do not routinely bank brains or other CNS samples in specific brainbanks. This is because we usually prefer to collect specimens prospectively so that they meet your exact requirements in terms of post mortem interval, storage & shipping, donor gender, age, disease & treatment, as well as clinical data required.