The NICHD Brain and Tissue Bank for Developmental Disorders is in contract to the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. We are located at the University of Maryland School of Medicine - Department of Pediatrics in Baltimore, Maryland.
The mission of the NICHD BTB is to advance the research of developmental disorders. The objective of this human tissue repository is to systematically collect, store, and distribute brain and other tissues for research dedicated to the improved understanding, care and treatment of individuals with developmental disorders.
Our Family web site is a separate web site dedicated to our tissue donors and their families. A registry of donors has also been established.
The recipient of tissue and the NICHD BTB are required to sign a Material Transfer Agreement before any tissues are transferred. All requests for tissue are to be submitted on-line.
The NICHD BTB has extensive experience in arranging for the rapid retrieval of tissue upon the death of individuals while at home, in hospitals or hospice care. The Bank is able to assist researchers who are working with patients who intend to donate tissues at the time of their death.
Meetings and Outreach
The Bank is very active in maintaining an ever growing and vital dialog with medical researchers, health care professionals, support groups, families and individuals. Scientific meetings and meetings of support groups are especially important to us. Learn more!
RECOMMENDATIONS FOR SEARCHES
Go to "Available Disorders" to list all cases available with information on demographics, tissues availability, length of tie in storage, the number of researchers who have requested tissue from each case and the number of tissue samples distributed. RIN values for RNA and 260/280 ratios of available DNA are listed for a significant proportion of the cases.
For access to a database with additional search functions it is necessary to obtain a password by going to the "NICHD BTB Portal". The portal also lists medical records and neuropathology reports that are in compliance with HIPAAA regulations.
Dr. Sulzer and his colleagues have established that a major difference between the brains of Autism Spectrum Disorder donors and control brains was that the ASD donors showed evidence of less pruning of spines in layer V pyramidal neurons than normal donors and that MTOR was involved in the pruning process. This bank supplied 41 frozen and fixed specimens from 25 donors for this research.
“Loss of mTOR-Dependent Macroautophagy Causes Autistic-like Synaptic Pruning Deficits” Tang et al. Neuron 83, 1-13, 2014.
The laboratories of Anne Comi and Jonathan Pevsner have identified a somatic mutation resulting in Sturge-Weber Syndrome using tissue donated by families with this disorder to the NICHD BTB.
"Sturge–Weber Syndrome and Port-Wine Stains Caused by Somatic Mutation in GNAQ" Shirley et al., N. Eng. J. Med. 2013, DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa1213507
Dr. Eric Courchesne and associates have identified abnormalities in the brain of ASD tissue donors that suggest that these abnormalities originated at prenatal developmental stages. Nineteen of the the 22 tissue samples were provided by the NICHD Brain and Tissue Bank.
"Patches of Disorganization in the Neocortex of Children with Autism" Stoner et al. N. Eng. J. Med. 370:1209-1219, 2014.