C. U. Ari¨ens Kappers brain collection (the Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience)

 

Netherlands | Amsterdam

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The C. U. Ari¨ens Kappers brain collection, at the Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience in Amsterdam, is one of the largest and oldest of the world’s catalogued repositories of specimens that reveal the course of brain evolution and the resulting panoply of neural biodiversity. Established a century ago, it has served since then as the basis of the encyclopedic texts authored by its founder, as well as research publications into the current time. It consists of 726 specimens: these include 309 mammals, 134 birds, 81 reptiles, 21 amphibians, and 179 “pisces”—a grouping of bony fish, sharks, and cyclostomes. Housed in the Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience, the collection is the result of a life time’s labor by Cornelius Ubbo Ariëns Kappers during his directorship (1909-1946) of the institute and contains representatives of over 300 species of vertebrates, including man.

Relevant People:

C. U. Ari¨ens Kapper

Museum Vrolik

 

Netherlands | Amsterdam

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Museum Vrolik is the anatomical museum of the University of Amsterdam/Academic Medical Center. It was founded as a private collection by anatomist Gerard Vrolik (1775-1859) en his son Willem (1801-1863). The collection comprises around 15.000 anatomical preparations of both man and animals, normal, pathological and malformations, skulls, skeletons, bones, dried organs, preparations in liquid, microscopic slides, instruments. The historical core collection of the museum (brougt together between 1750 and 1950 includes specimens of neuroanatomy: topographical and regional anatomy of the brain & development of the fetal brain (both late 19th century and early 20th century), largely collected by anatomist Lodewijk Bolk; it also includes specimens of neural tube defects and other neurananatomical malformations (early 19th century & early 20th century)(mainly collected by father and son Vrolik and Lodewijk Bolk; finally it includes a small collection of comparative neuroanatomy (brains of different animals (early 19th century-early 20th century) Since 2016 we are the owner of the historical collection of comparative neuroanatomy of the Dutch National Brain Institute. This collection consists of both specimens in liquid and microscopic slides, collected between 1909 and 1940 (By neuroanatomist C.U. Ariens Kappers) Since 2017 we are the owner of the historical collection of comparative anatomy and zoology of the faculty of sciences (University of Amsterdam); this collection includes specimens of comparative neuroanatomy (brains of animals) collected between the 1880s and the 1940s, for a large part by zoologist Max Weber.

Relevant People:

Gerard Vrolik, Wilhem Vrolik, Lodewijk Bolk

Museo Camillo Golgi

 

Italy | Corteno

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In 1894 the Institute of General Pathology, directed by Golgi and one of the most famous biomedical research centres in Europe at the time, was set in the historic building Palazzo Botta. The very same rooms today house the the Camillo Golgi Museum in order to bring back, thanks to the heritage of scientific tools and documents left behind, the living memory of that laboratory. The Museum was founded in October 2012 and comprises six rooms. The first room shows the original office of the Institute’s Directors. In the second one a review of Camillo Golgi’s greatest discoveries is on display: the black reaction, the research studies on malaria and the identification of the Golgi apparatus, which took place right in this building. Beside a rich collection of microtomes and microscopes, a collection of camera lucidas and of the first devices developed for microphotography is also accommodated in the room. The third room focuses on some of Golgi’s students and the equipment they used to make their cutting-edge discoveries. The old library and the archive are housed in the fourth room and in the fifth one, where the antique furniture allows the visitors to catch also visually the atmosphere of that period. The last room is the Aula Golgi, the splendid hemicycle where Camillo Golgi taught and where seminars and conferences are held still today.

Relevant People:

Camillo Golgi

Museo per la Storia dell’Università

 

Italy | Pavia

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The museum houses a room dedicated to Camillo Golgi, who was awarded the NobelPrize for medicine in 1906 for his invention of a histology method, known as the black or silver chromate method, which laid the foundation of modern neuroscience. A case shows instruments and documentes concerning Golgi’s life and discoveries. They include key discoveries for the field of cytology such as the Golgi apparatus, and his studies on malaria, which were important for infectivology. A case is dedicated to Adelchi Negri, whose name is linked to a major discovery about rabies (Negri bodies). The museum has an important archival collection (about 3000 documents) relating to teaching and research activities, Golgi&’s political commitment or his private life.

Relevant People:

Alessandro Volta

Musee Dupuytren

 

France | Paris

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This museum has displays of anatomical malformations, consisting of a large collection of specimens and wax models from the 17th century. The museum also has brains studied by the great Paul Pierre Broca. It was named after anatomist and surgical professor Guillaume Dupuytren. In 2016, the Dupuytren museum collections were transferred to the Jussieu campus, joining eight of UPMC’s scientific collections. The collections are installed in reserves and are not accessible to the public. They are open to research projects and notwithstanding students by appointment.

Relevant People:

Paul Pierre Broca

Musee d’Anatomie Delmas-Orfila-Rouviere

 

France | Paris

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France’s largest collection of anatomical models and specimens began as small collection cultivated by Honore Fragonard (a professor of anatomy at the University of Paris). The collection was enhanced by Mathieu Orfila ( the dean of Medicine at U. of Paris), after he visited London’s Huntarian. In true french patriotism he sought to out shine the British. The museum contains specimens of humans and animals, including embryological reconstructions and pieces of neuro-anatomy.

Relevant People:

Honore Fragonard

Musée d’Anatomie de Montpellier

 

France | Montpellier

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The oldest and the largest anatomy museum in France, the museum is situated inside the world famous and historic University of Montpellier. Structured with wide Doric columns, the museum‘s collections were listed as historic monuments in 2004. The museum’s educational dimension cannot be missed amidst the eeriness which envelops it. The main features of the museum are: -Deformed foetuses preserved in jars -Human and animal skeletons -An “ethnological” collection of skulls.

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