The Brain Tissue Resource Center (BTRC) was established in 1978 to promote neurochemical research in two disorders - Huntington's disease (HD) and schizophrenia. At that time, lay organizations alerted their members in order to promote brain donations. Over 500 HD brain donations have been made by families having this autosomal dominant disorder. Only in the last year have a substantial number of brain donations been made by the next of kin of persons dying with schizophrenia. This recent increase is largely due to the formation of a national organization called the Alliance for the Mentally I11 (AMI) which is committed to promoting basic research into mental illness. The BTRC has more recently been collecting brain tissue from other neuropsychiatric disorders. A neuropathological examination is carried out on one half of every brain in order to confirm a diagnosis or rule out any pathology in a normal control brain. The remaining half is frozen and then dissected into as many as 60 regions which are then stored and later distributed to neuroscientists requesting tissue. Brain tissues have been collected from over 49 states and 6 countries and then dissected and distributed to 200 neuroscientists in 30 states and 5 countries. The BTRC also conducts research in order to improve methods in the collection and dissection of brain tissue. Over the BTRC's nine-year period, there have been over 300 publications written by the BTRC staff and the investigators utilizing the brain tissue for their studies. These published findings cover 15 different neuropsychiatric disorders as well as much new basic data found in the """"""""normal"""""""" human brain. These discoveries have opened a new frontier into the study of a number of human disorders of the brain. The BTRC has been supported by NIMH, NINCDS, the Hereditary Disease Foundation, The Wills Foundation, the Huntington's Disease Foundation, and the Scottish Rite Foundation's Schizophrenia Research Program.

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National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
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Neurosciences Research Review Committee (BPN)
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Mc Lean Hospital (Belmont, MA)
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