Newswise — Throughout the history of Alzheimer’s disease research, key discoveries have depended on banked brain tissue. As scientists look to earlier stages of the disease to research prevention, brain banks are in more demand than ever. Around the world, brain banks are combining their holdings into large online databases and standardizing protocols for processing tissue to make it easier for researchers to find the material they need. At the same time, government and public support for banks has dwindled, leaving these institutions scrambling to find funds to expand their collections and maintain databases. Alzforum’s three-part series explores the need for banked tissue (Part 1), describes the large brain bank networks now in existence around the world (Part 2), and highlights resources specific to Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease (Part 3).

About Alzforum: Founded in 1996, the Alzforum is a dynamic Web-based scientific community dedicated to understanding Alzheimer's disease and related disorders. Access to the website is free to all. Our editorial priorities are as diverse as the needs of the research community. The website reports on the latest scientific findings from basic research to clinical trials, creates and maintains public databases of essential research data and reagents, and produces discussion forums to promote debate, speed the dissemination of new ideas, and break down barriers across the numerous disciplines that can contribute to the global effort to cure Alzheimer's disease. The Alzforum team of professional science writers and editors, information technology experts, Web developers, and producers all work closely with our distinguished Advisory Board to ensure a high quality of information and services. We very much welcome our readers' participation in all aspects of the website.

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