The University of Pittsburgh ALS Tissue Bank facilitates ALS diagnostics and research in the Pittsburgh area and around the country. This program examines and stores brain, muscle and spinal cord tissue samples from ALS patients and controls who have been seen at UPMC and elsewhere in Western Pennsylvania. Careful examination of brain, muscle and spinal cord tissue provides ALS researchers with important neurological and neurochemical information about the disease. Donated tissues are stored at the UPMC Health System for use in current and future research projects. Samples from this tissue bank are available to ALS researchers at the University of Pittsburgh and throughout the country. Because only a few ALS tissue banks currently exist in the United States, researchers share these scarce and vital resources to obtain the best quality research. Banking tissue for future research is vitally important to further understanding of ALS and improving treatment options for ALS patients. By donating tissue, you will be making an invaluable contribution to research into ALS and other neurodegenerative diseases. Your selfless act could make an immeasurable difference for future patients with ALS. In addition, tissue examination is the best way to confirm a clinical diagnosis. If you are interested in tissue donation, it is important to make your wishes known to family members and contact us as early as possible for arrangements.
Julia Kofler, MD is the neuropathologist in charge of the ALS tissue bank and for diagnostic evaluation of autopsy tissues.
The attached document provides information about brain and spinal cord donation. For additional questions about donation or for utilizing the tissue bank for your research, please contact us or email us. At this time, we are able to accept donations from patients only seen in our Center so that we are able to provide this service free of charge.