Postmortem Tissue Program

The ALS Postmortem Tissue Program of the Eleanor and Lou Gehrig ALS Center, together with the New York Brain Bank offers ALS patients and families the opportunity to contribute to ALS research in a most meaningful way. Brain and spinal cord tissue donations are critical to our efforts to understand how neurons degenerate in ALS, and to develop novel therapies for this and related neurodegenerative disorders.

With support from the Target ALS Foundation, Columbia has joined a national consortium of ALS Centers that banks brain, spinal cord and other tissues from ALS patients (and for comparison, from healthy individuals) for distribution to ALS investigators at academic institutions and industry partners around the world. In addition to patient recruitment, tissue acquisition, storage, and distribution, the program involves neuropathological examination of nervous tissue, imaging, and molecular analysis, and these data are provided to ALS researchers along with tissue samples and de-identified clinical information to empower their studies.

Autopsy and tissue banking services are provided at no cost, and in most instances will not delay funeral arrangements. If you, your friend, or family member is interested in making a donation to the ALS Postmortem Tissue program, please call 212-305-6788, or write alscenter@columbia.edu.