Visitors to this facility, also known as the Museum of Neuroanatomy, get a learning experience that’s literally more in-depth than a traditional slide- and textbook-based education.
Taken as a whole, the Brain Museum’s collection demonstrates how the components of our nervous systems work together. Visitors can see the brain’s layers and internal structures firsthand and view them from different angles.
More than 80 beautifully illuminated brain specimens highlight anatomical features such as the corpus callosum, hippocampus and cerebellum. Pathological specimens show conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, cerebral aneurysms and hydrocephalus.
Dissections show the full pathways for vision and hearing, and photographs offer closer views of the brain’s intricate structures. A display that highlights the achievements of groundbreaking researchers in neuroanatomy sets the discipline in its historical context.
The museum also houses a world-class collection of slides that display stained cross-sections of brain tissue, which medical students and researchers can consult by arrangement with the Department of Pathology and Anatomical Sciences.
The museum’s founder and long-time curator, Harold Brody, MD ’61, PhD, prepared many of the specimens and slides himself. A former professor and chair of anatomy and cell biology, Brody built this exhibit to be used by everyone, from kindergartners to neurosurgery students.
Today, Christopher Cohan, PhD, professor of pathology and anatomical sciences, carries on Brody’s legacy. He makes the museum a core resource for students in his neuroscience classes and conducts tours for interested groups, which have included our own MD and PhD students, dental and occupational therapy students, psychology PhD candidates, guests at parents’ weekend and Girl Scouts.