Autism BrainNet is the sole function of a non-profit company, Foundation Associates, LLC that has been established to provide financial support for its operation. Foundation Associates receives financial support from the Simons Foundation. It has a Board of Managers that oversees the operations of Autism BrainNet.
Autism BrainNet is directed by Dr. David G. Amaral who has been an active member of the autism research community since 1998. A trained neuroanatomist and Research Director of the UC Davis MIND Institute, Dr. Amaral will have overall responsibility to insure that donations are handled according to rigorous operating procedures and to insure that the donations remain safe and are distributed to investigators who are carrying out the highest quality research.
Autism BrainNet has started operations with four regional Nodes located in Sacramento, Dallas, Boston and New York. These Nodes are funded and administered by a centralized organization to: 1) carry out collection and processing of donated brains and other tissues, 2) conduct regional outreach to raise awareness with families about the critical need for donations, and 3) engage in relationship building with medical examiners and coroners. A guiding principle is that a regional approach will optimize relationships with potential donors and lead to the acquisition of the highest quality brain and other tissue. Data related to all donations will be deposited into a secure, centralized database.