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Donate Your Body to Science

Support Humane Medical Research That Saves Lives

Most people know that they can help humane health charities through generous contributions of money or time, but a lesser-known way to support the eradication and treatment of human disease without harming animals is through posthumous body donation. Two humane charities include the Anatomy Gifts Registry (AGR) and the United Tissue Network (UTN). These organizations are dedicated to providing valuable human bodies, organs, and tissues to medical researchers and students.

Anatomy Gifts Registry

The Maryland-based AGR was started in 1994 after its founders recognized the need for donated human tissue for use in medical research and education. AGR helps donors rest with dignity while making an important contribution to science. At present, AGR maintains a state-of-the-art surgical skills training facility to allow scientists, clinicians, and educators to come from all over the world to perform research and hold classes in a technologically advanced, centrally located setting.

United Tissue Network

UTN was founded in 2009 to empower people who want to make a difference through whole-body donation by uniting them with professionals dedicated to the advancement of medical technology, training, and education. UTN offers donors the opportunity to be both an organ and whole-body donor. UTN will coordinate with the local organ procurement organization to ensure that all organs and tissue viable for transplant take first priority before transporting the donor to one of their facilities. This allows for the body donation to be completely utilized while honoring the wishes of the donor.

Donate to Science

Both AGR and UTN are nonprofit, accredited organizations that work with potential donors and their families prior to death to alleviate any concerns and to plan for post-mortem wishes. Donations are treated with the utmost respect and care, and AGR and UTN assist involved parties throughout every step of the process. In addition to the significant benefits body donation provides to the medical community, AGR and UTN also cover many of the costs associated with the end of life.

Body, organ, and tissue donation is vital for researchers to improve their understanding of how diseases start and progress, and what keeps us healthy. Through donation, scientists develop new ways of diagnosing diseases and developing new treatments. Research breakthroughs using human tissues and organs have been made in Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, and more. To learn more about body donation and the research it facilitates, please visit AnatomyGifts.org and UnitedTissue.org.