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Dr Laura Palmer


Laura studied at the University of Bristol where she completed her degree in Pathology and Microbiology and later her PhD in Neuroscience. In 2004 she began a technical post with the South West Dementia Brain Bank (SWDBB) which she now manages. The SWDBB is a research resource of post-mortem brain tissue from people with Alzheimer’s disease or other dementias as well as from people with no memory problems. We accept brain donations from people with dementia or older people without memory problems living across the South West region. 

Almost all of the major advances in our understanding and treatment of neurological disease have been based on the examination of human brain tissue.

The causes of Alzheimer’s disease and most other forms of dementia are largely unknown and treatment can only try to reduce symptoms. Comparison of brain tissue from people who have had dementia with that from people who have never had the disease, helps us to identify abnormalities that are specific for different dementing illnesses and that contribute to their development. In addition, the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease or other dementias cannot usually be confirmed without examination of the brain after death, and accurate diagnosis is critical to progress in research and treatment.

The Brain Bank has Tissue Bank ethical approval and is licensed by the Human Tissue Authority.




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