Newcastle and North Tyneside 1 Research Ethics Committee
Name of establishment responsible for the bank
Newcastle Brain Tissue Resource
Newcastle Brain Tissue Resource
Contact Point Name/Address
Ms D J Lett
Institute for Ageing and Health
Newcastle upon Tyne NE4 5PL
Types of Sample from living
1. Blood samples collected from ongoing study participants (85+ Study) for genetic and other analyses are currently stored in the Biogerontology Research Building. These samples have been collected with full consent from donors and have ethical approval for retention and use.(Minute ref 06/Q0905/2). Transfer of samples to NBTR would ensure the continuation of this valuable resource beyond the lifespan of this study.
2. Small samples of brain and neurological tissue are also retained with consent of patients during neurosurgery procedures. ( Minute ref 2000/277)
3. Blood and cerebrospinal fluid may be collected with consent for ethically approved studies.
4. Blood and cerebrospinal fluid and tissue samples (e.g neurosurgical) which is surplus to routine care may be collected with consent for ethically approved studies.
5. Personal data, contact details, clinical and neuropsychological data about donors (or potential donors) may be collected and stored with consent of individual and/or relatives. This data considerably increases the value of the tissue for research purposes.
Types of Sample from deceased
1. Brain and spinal cord tissue and in some cases small samples of other tissues are collected at autopsy from donors suffering from a range of dementias, neurodegenerative and vascular disorders and occasionally related psychiatric or genetic disorders largely via prospective clinical studies within the IAH which already have ethical approval for such collection(e.g Min ref 99/152, MREC/0/3/34) but also via national initiatives such as Brains for Dementia Research (funded by Alzheimer's Society and Alzheimer's Research Trust). Increasingly we may also be asked to collect tissue for redistribution to other brain banks in the UK as a part of the MRC networking strategy.
2. Brain and spinal cord tissue and in some cases small samples of other tissues are collected at autopsy from volunteer donors (often relatives of study participants/patients)as part of the Normal Control Initiative (05/Q0906/148).
3. Brain and spinal cord tissue and in some cases small samples of other tissues may also be collected at autopsies carried out by HM Coroner as part of the Normal Control Initiative. In addition to consent from HM Coroner, full informed consent will have been sought from next of kin using methods previously approved by this ethics committee (05/Q906/148).
4. Ocular tissue (surplus to transplantation) will be collected with consent as part of the Ocular Tissue Resource in conjunction with the corneal donation service(ethical application currently in preparation)
5. Demographic and clinical data will be securely recorded for all donors. Paper records will be securely stored in a purpose built locked facility. Databases are password protected. Personally identifiable details are stored in a separate file accessible only to NBTR core staff and will not be provided to tissue users.
Fixed and frozen tissue samples are available to bona fide researchers, both within the University and from other reputable research organisations, for use in high quality research which has evidence of peer review and funding. Currently we also ask for evidence of ethical approval. At the end of their project researchers are expected to provide NBTR with data resulting from their studies in order to continually enrich the information available for research use. This data will then be made available to other researchers on request.
Research to be undertaken
NBTR tissue is used for research into the functioning of the brain and nervous system in particular in the field of brain ageing,age-related disease and neurodegenerative disease. Potential donors with such disorders and normal controls are recruited mainly through clinical research programmes. Work will include molecular and biochemical changes and genetics. Diseases studied will include dementias, neurodegenerative disease such as Parkinson's Disease, depression and some psychiatric disorders.