Frequently Asked Questions

For researchers

One cerebral hemisphere (randomly left or right) is sampled.

  • Some samples are frozen on dry ice, or in liquid nitrogen, for biochemical analyses, DNA or RNA extractions.
  • Small (around 2 x 2 cm) samples are mounted on cork, frozen in isopentane cooled liquid nitrogen, for histologic sections (thickness: 30 μm, cryostat sections).

The other hemisphere is sampled and fixed in buffered formaldehyde for 3 months.

Other types of conditioning can be developed to meet the scientists' needs.

The brain, cerebellum and brainstem are removed. Only the upper cervical cord is generally available (spinal cord is taken entirely for diseases with spinal lesions such as multiple sclerosis or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis).

The following subcortical nuclei are systematically sampled: lenticular nucleus (including putamen and pallidum), caudate nucleus, thalamus, subthalamic nucleus, nucleus basalis of Meynert, amygdala, substantia nigra.

The following cortical areas are systematically sampled: middle frontal gyrus, superior temporal gyrus, motor cortex, supramarginal gyrus, visual cortex.

The autopsy and sampling protocols may be adapted in a prospective way for specific needs.

The PMD may vary from 24 to 48 hours, with an average of 30 hours.

The definition of an adequate control case depends on the study. Control cases are difficult to collect in all Brainbank, and the Brainbank NeuroCEB has had also difficulties in finding good matches to patients' cases. Most of the control cases are older than 60 years; many of them have early lesions of AD.

The mean delay is 1.5 months. It includes the delay to obtain the agreement of the Research Department of Pitie-Salpetriere Hospital, and to prepare the samples.

The biological material is free, according to French law. But a compensation is required to cover the costs incurred by the collection, preparation and conditioning of the samples. The prices have been calculated with the standards of the French health insurance system.

Alzheimer disease, Fronto-Temporal Dementia, Vascular Dementia, Lewy Body diseases (including Parkinson disease and dementia with Lewy body), Steele-Richardson-Olzewski disease (progressive supranuclear palsy, PSP), Multiple-System Atrophy, Cortico-Basal Degeneration, Multiple Sclerosis, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, Cerebellar Ataxia, controls.