Last week new details of a lawsuit emerged against The Biological Resource Centre in Arizona following an FBI raid in 2014 in which gruesome remains of hundreds of discarded body parts were discovered.
The now closed centre is accused of illegally selling body parts against the donors wishes.
Newly released court documents revealed that families of those whose bodies had been donated to the centre said they believed their relatives remains would be used for medical and scientific research.
Jim Stauffer is one of the multiple plaintiffs suing the centre. He believed his mother's donated body would be used to study Alzheimer's, a disease she had, but he later found out it was used by the military to examine the effects of explosives.
In other countries, religious beliefs may impact upon decisions to donate a body for medical research. For example in some African countries even organ donation is a taboo, and desecration of the body is considered contrary to some religious teachings.
In a highly bureaucratic process that involves the joint work of six government ministries, real human body parts (mostly shoulders, knees, ankles and torsos) are imported to the hospital, with most of the supply coming from the United States.