Kathleen Price Bryan Brain Bank and Biorepository
Home Research Brain Bank

Biospecimen Technician ImageThe Kathleen Price Bryan Brain Bank and Biorepository is an integral component of the Joseph and Kathleen Bryan Alzheimer's Disease Research Center at Duke University. For more than 25 years, the Bryan Brain Bank has been recognized as a premier biorepository for its role in advancing Alzheimer’s disease science and treatment. The Brain Bank provides Duke researchers and academic and industry collaborators world-wide with access to longitudinal clinical information, quality biospecimens, and services to support and advance basic and clinical research in the neurosciences. A collection of over 1,100 frozen and formalin preserved brains, 400 cerebral spinal fluid biospecimens with accompanying clinical, pathology, and neurocognitive data, and over 6,200 DNA samples are currently housed at the Brain Bank.

John Ervin, Laboratory Manager,
Kathleen Price Bryan Brain Bank

The Kathleen Price Bryan Brain Bank contains approximately 750 brains from patients with Alzheimer's Disease and related dementing disorders and 250 brains with other neurological disorders such as Parkinson's Disease, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, Huntington's Disease and Muscular Dystrophy. Approximately 200 Normal Control Brains are available.

Brains are received from several sources:
  • Bryan ADRC's autopsy program coordinates tissue retrieval from patients and controls seen at the Memory Disorders Clinic and who reside in Durham, North Carolina.
  • Community pathologists retrieve tissue from patients and controls seen at the MDC or enrolled in our family genetic studies who reside outside a 50 mile radius of Duke.

Tissue retrieval is coordinated through the Autopsy & Brain Donation Program. The program coordinator works with patients, families, neurologists, geriatricians, primary care providers and pathologists. All tissue is then cataloged and stored in the Brain Bank. Sections are removed and processed, histological slides are evaluated for diagnosis by Duke neuropathologist. These data are entered in Bryan ADRC database.

Fixed and frozen hemispheres, paraffin blocks and histological slides are then stored in the Brain Bank until a request for tissue is received. Tissue can then be selected, retrieved and shipped. The Brain Bank receives an average of 50 requests per year. Each request generally consists of 10-100 specimens.

Please use following links:

  • To learn more about Bryan ADRC's Autopsy Brain Donation Program, click here.
  • To complete the online tissue request form, click here.
  • To download the tissue request form as a Microsoft Word (48KB) document file, click here.