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Norway halts research involving dead infant brains

STAVANGER, Norway: Norway has said that it has halted research on tissues obtained from autopsies after accusations that the work involves using the long-stored brains of dead babies and infants without their parents’ consent.

Torleiv Ole Rognum, a senior pediatric pathologist at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health, said that the brains of about 700 boys and girls aged 3 or younger have been autopsied since 1984, mostly to investigate why the child died suddenly.

Rognum, on Wednesday, said that hospital officials had not broken the law because they had informed parents about the autopsies and did not need their permission.

But Rognum said the long-term storage of the brain tissues for later research may have been illegal and the institute was investigating.

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