Freezer failure ruins Harvard's 'priceless' brain collection6/11/2012
A freezer broke down at a Harvard-affiliated hospital in Belmont, Mass., ruining one-third of the world's largest collection of brain tissue used to study autism. "This was a priceless collection," says Dr. Francine Benes, director of the Harvard Brain Tissue Resource Center. The freezer went kaput in May at the McLean Hospital but no warning alarms went off. As a result, about 150 brain samples of people who had neurological conditions, including autism, Parkinson's disease and schizophrenia, thawed and began to decay. Scientists say the loss could set back autism research by a decade.
Do you think this malfunction could have been avoided?