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Banner Sun Health Research Institute

Founded in 1986 and located in Sun City, Arizona, Banner Sun Health Research Institute is an international leader in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, Lewy body diseases and Parkinson’s disease, as well as the study of brain and cognitive aging. The institution is a leading contributor in research collaborations and consortia, including the NIA-funded Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center and state-funded Arizona Alzheimer’s Consortium.

Leveraging decades of experience and leadership in the field, the team also offers important training opportunities to students, residents and fellows, and continuing medical education courses and other learning opportunities for health care providers. Over decades, the institute and team have made seminal medical and scientific contributions to advance diagnostics and therapeutics, including development and validation of powerful strategies and methods to aid in early and accurate detection of Alzheimer’s disease, and helping to accelerate development and testing of more effective therapies to slow, treat and prevent Alzheimer’s and related neurodegenerative brain disorders.

Integrating Clinical Research and Exceptional Care

As a Banner Health Center of Excellence, our research endeavors are integrated with expert outpatient clinical care through cutting-edge diagnostics and observational studies and clinical trials. This provides patients and their families direct access to the latest diagnostic technologies and investigational treatments for their conditions and also allows study participants and researchers to partner to develop new therapies and disease prevention approaches that will positively impact future generations. Learn more about ongoing clinical trials.

Join a Clinical Trial

Learn more about the clinical trials that we are currently offering or call (623) 832-6500. If you are interested in participating, please complete this form.

Study of Cognitive Aging and Neurodegenerative Disorders

The Brain and Body Donation Program at Banner Sun Health Research Institute is a leading resource for researchers globally. The program is an autopsy-based, research-devoted brain and biospecimen bank. Enrolled eligible seniors throughout metropolitan Phoenix, Arizona, participate in annual assessments (including blood work and brain imaging) during life and donate their brain and body tissue after death.

The program has earned an international reputation for advancing our understanding of brain diseases. It transfers more than 20,000 tissues to qualified researchers across more than 35 states and 30 different countries each year. This results in a generation of important scientific results that are published in more than 80 scientific journal articles every year and are presented at numerous prestigious medical and scientific conferences. Learn more about enrolling into the Brain and Body Donation Program.

Study of Healthy Aging

The Center for Health Aging is the first research program of its kind in Arizona to explore the cognitive, social, medical, physical and psychological contributors to healthy aging. We are working to better understand optimal aging to enhance quality of life in older adults. Founded in 2006, the study continues to enroll individuals 50 years of age and older. The Longevity: Learning From our Elders study incorporates over a decade of valuable information from optimally aging seniors throughout the state of Arizona, complementing our research on individuals affected by memory impairment and movement disorders.

Education, Support and Mentoring

Banner Sun Health Research Institute provides training to dozens of students, trainees, residents, fellows including during clinical practicums, residency rotations and internships and post-doctoral fellowships in research, neuropsychology and neurology.

Additionally, the team shares the scientific and medical contributions with the larger scientific community by participating in international research studies, consortia, and workgroups, publishing and presenting at prestigious conferences and meetings, and conducting peer-to-peer educational courses and symposia, such as the annual BSHRI Alzheimer’s, Lewy Body and Related Dementia one-day continuing education symposium, and co-sponsoring and co-leading the annual Harvard Medical School “Dementia: A Comprehensive Update” 4-day continuing education course by Dr. Alireza Atri.

Providing An Environment Conducive to Innovation and Research

At Banner Sun Health Research Institute, we maintain an environment dedicated to discovery, innovation and education. This requires continual investment in the human resources and facilities including space, tools and technologies needed to facilitate state-of-the-art clinical trials, studies and research. We do this by offering:

  • Research operations embedded within our outpatient clinic
  • An established memory screening program to engage cognitive normal adults
  • Deep Brain Stimulation Capabilities
  • EMR integration for chart review and study feasibility
  • An on-site autopsy procedure room and tissue repository
  • On-site safety lab processing
  • Advanced biomarker and CSF collection and processing
  • A GMP-compliant pharmacy with registered pharmacists and compounding capabilities
  • Secure, temperature-controlled drug storage with IV infusion capability
  • Standard and refrigerated centrifuges
  • -20C and -80C freezers
  • A backup power source for all critical systems
  • Locked, fire-resistant file storage
  • Private rooms with high-speed internet access for study monitors

Contact Us

Banner Sun Health Research Institute
10515 W. Santa Fe Drive
Sun City, AZ 85351
(623) 832-6500