© BrainNet Europe II
BrainNet Europe is a "Network of Excellence" funded by the European Commission in the 6th Framework Program "Life Science" (LSHM-CT-2004-503039). It consists of 19 established brain banks across Europe and is coordinated by the Centre for Neuropathology and Prion Research Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich, Germany.
|Guidelines for Brain Banking|
The legal and ethical issues in brain banking are numerous. Post-mortem removal and retention of organs as well as research with human tissue and genetic information have posed various dilemmas in the fields of law and ethics. Due to the relative novelty of these issues, the law is often lacking in clear instructions and unambiguous guidelines. Many governmental and professional organizations (such as OECD, CoE, WMA), which draft guidelines in the field of human research ethics, do not fully account in their discourse for the ethical problems involved in post-mortem cell and tissue banking for research purposes. Because the Brain Banks in many legislations do not qualify for a certain well-defined legal regime and because the existing regimes differ significantly throughout Europe many uncertainties arise for the decision-makers, persons who initiate and manage Brain Banks.
Appointed to lead the work in the workpackage on legal and ethical issues, the NBB has been systematically surveying and reviewing legal and ethical issues involved in Brain Banking. On these pages a series of documents are presented which can serve as a guideline, a checklist and in many cases as a template, for those who aspire to set-up or professionalize a research biobank which collects, processes and distributes organs, tissues, cells or fluids obtained from the deceased donors. Globally accepted bioethical principles and international doctrine as well as best practices of the Consortium members underlie all work presented here.