The University of Michigan Brain Bank was founded by Professor Anne B. Young and Professor J. Penney to collect, store and distribute post-mortem brain tissues and associated clinical history. Established in 1982, the Michigan Brain Bank, in partnership with the Protein Folding Diseases Initiative, now has approximately 1200 paraffin and 650 frozen brains. The program currently has 350 registered living clinical research participants who have consented to donate after death.
The Michigan Brain Bank has contributed to studies of many brain diseases, including studies of Alzheimer disease, Parkinson disease, Huntington disease, ALS, and psychiatric diseases. Active research programs include studies of Alzheimer disease and related dementias, Parkinson disease, ALS, and bipolar disorder.
Studying brain tissue from people with bipolar disorder offers a very unique research opportunity to learn how the illness affected them through the lifespan.
The Brain Autopsy and Donation Program provides individuals and families with an opportunity to contribute to research. With the hope of developing pharmaceutical treatments and finding cures, the Brain Bank is committed to providing the scientific community with the brain tissues necessary to investigate the progression of neurological disease. Scientists around the world contact the Michigan Brain Bank to access tissue and information. The Michigan Brain Bank carefully screens all proposals and only approves legitimate requests. The Brain Bank adheres to all applicable regulations and guidelines when procuring, storing and distributing brain tissue. Appropriate consent is always obtained and donor anonymity is maintained.