Freezer failure at brain bank hampers autism research

Boston Globe | June 11, 2012

By Karen Weintraub

A freezer malfunction at Harvard-affiliated McLean Hospital has severely damaged one-third of the world’s largest collection of autism brain samples, potentially setting back research on the disorder by years, scientists say.

Benes said the situation is so unusual – the perfect storm of alarm and thermostat failure and the concentration of samples – that she cannot rule out foul play. She said she has not spoken to law enforcement officials, pending the completion of the internal investigation.

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