The Stanley Medical Research Institute (SMRI) Brain Collection and Database

Maree J. Webster – Director SMRI Brain Collection and Research Laboratory

The SMRI has been supporting psychiatric research, collecting and distributing postmortem brain samples and collecting the results from these samples since 1995. Postmortem brains are collected from subjects with schizophrenia (SCH), bipolar disorder (BD) and major depression (MD) as well as from normal unaffected controls. Researchers apply for and are sent samples from designated cohorts e.g. the Consortium Collection (15 each SCH, BD, MD and controls) or the Array Collection (35 each SCH, BPD and controls). The groups within each cohort are matched for variables such as age, sex, PMI and brain pH. All samples are sent coded and only after the results have been returned to SMRI is the code and demographic information sent to the researcher. SMRI has accumulated over 2,000 individual data sets that measured various cytoarchitectural, biochemical and molecular features from multiple brain areas of the Consortium Collection alone. In addition there are numerous microarray gene-expression data sets, microRNA-array, epigenetic, proteomic and SNP-array data sets. All data is made publically available at and at (SNCID). The SNCID database integrates the data derived from the 60 cases in the Consortium Collection with web based statistical software. User-friendly statistical tools such as descriptive analysis, variance analysis and correlation analysis are included. An interface links the SNCID to NCBI and a functional annotation database, DAVID (, that enables users to efficiently explore genes and pathways that may underlie the mental disorders. Additional microRNA array data, methylation array data and RNA-seq data from the same cohort will eventually be included as will similar data from the additional cohorts.

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