Iran joins other countries in establishing ‘brain bank’

TEHRAN, Jan. 30 (MNA) – Iran has joined the US, Germany and other European countries in establishing a ‘brain bank’ to study the causes of neurological diseases such as MS and the Alzheimer’s.

Mohammad Taghi Jaghataei, director of Iran’s brain bank, told MNA correspondent that the country’s first brain bank has been established at Iran University of Medical sciences in collaboration with the Research Center of Ministry of Health with the objective to study neurological diseases.

Head of Anatomy and Neuroscience department stressed the significance for establishing a brain bank in Iran which has been around in other countries for 20 years, saying the bank was needed so that researchers could easily conduct their studies on the Alzheimer’s disease, autism, Parkinson, multiple sclerosis (MS), motor disorders and diseases related to the central nervous system.

According to Jaghataei, until now Iranian researchers conducted their genetic and cellular studies on animal models, but studying animal models presented a lot of limitations, therefore studying human brains could yield more effective results.

Noting that one month has passed since the establishment of the brain bank, he said “even during such a short span of time, three brains have already been added to the bank, each of them with an information card that has all clinical and pathological data such as the type of disease, the patient’s medical history and age, etc.”

Jaghataei maintained that Iran’s brain bank has been created according to the “Network of Excellence” of European brain banks, adding “there are two sources the brain bank can use; one is the brains of patients with neurological diseases who have now passed away and the other is those parts of the brain removed during surgeries.”

Noting that the donations of all or parts of patients’ brains to the brain bank will be done with the families’ full consent, he added “after the death of patients with neurological diseases, the brain must be removed within 6 hours and given to the bank. Then, the brain must be delivered under temperature of minus 80 degrees and in special conditions for the researchers to study.”

So far, countries including Britain, France, Qatar, Kuwait, Japan, US, Sweden, Spain, Greece, Finland and Canada have established brain banks.

By Mehr News Agency