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2012, Volume 28, Number 3, Page(s) 189-194     
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DOI: 10.5146/tjpath.2012.01124
Who Owns These Tissues? General Principles on the Use of Material Submitted to Pathology Departments for Healthcare, Education and Research Purposes
Sümeyye EKMEKÇİ1, Osman Arıkan NACAR2, Tarık TİHAN3
1Department of Pathology, Dokuz Eylül University, Faculty of Medicine, İZMİR, TURKEY
2Department of Neurosurgery, Ankara Numune Education and Research Hospital, ANKARA, TURKEY
3University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, USA
Keywords: Pathology, Ownership, Review, Informed consent, Ethics committee

The study of human tissues procured through invasive procedures for diagnostic and treatment purposes constitutes one of the most important functions of pathology departments worldwide. The final diagnosis, determination of appropriate therapy and detailed insight on many diseases are possible only through the analysis of these tissues with the use of modern analytical techniques. While these statements present no controversy, the laws and regulations on how to use these tissues for diagnostic, educational and research purposes are woefully insufficient and cause significant debate. In addition to the lack of principles that define the possession and use of these tissues, there are a number of prejudices in our country that are not consistent with the scientific and medical facts. This study aims to frame the problems arising in this matter and provides a review of the rules, experience and legislation in various countries with a discussion of some examples. We aim to provide ideas on the general fundamental principles that should be incorporated in future legislation in our country. We also hope that our study initiates a healthy discussion of this critical topic.

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