Neuroinformatics Overview

Neuroinformatics is a research field concerned with the organization of neuroscience data by the application of computational models and analytical tools.

These areas of research are important for the integration and analysis of increasingly large-volume, high-dimensional, and fine-grain experimental data. Neuroinformaticians provide computational tools, mathematical models, and create interoperable databases for clinicians and research scientists.

Crowdsourcing Brain Data

Mason neuroscientist Giorgio Ascoli is working on another complexity related to the brain — how to handle the massive amount of data researchers are creating on a near-daily basis.

National Academies Keck Futures Initiative is a step toward giving researchers another tool in their work. It’s a data overload worth organizing because, as Ascoli points out, such a “knowledge base” could reveal patterns, show untapped areas for future research and cut duplication.

Data Mining of Neuronal Morphologies

Knowledge Representation and Data Mining of Neuronal Morphologies Using Neuroinformatics tools and Formal Ontologies.

Remote regulation of neural activity

Principal Investigator: Sarah Stanley
Rockefeller University
Title: "Remote regulation of neural activity"
BRAIN Category: Tools for Cells and Circuits (RFA MH-14-216)

The Stanley team will focus on the development of tools to instantly and precisely target cell activity deep in the brain using radio waves, nanoparticles and genetically modified viruses.

NIH Webpages

The Brain Observatory

Neuroanatomist Dr. Jacopo Annese at UCSD, is curating a vast virtual collection of brains that will be housed online, called the Digial Brain Library.

The effort actually began a few years ago when The Brain Observatory at UC San Diego was charged with the examination of the brain of Henry G. Molaison, an amnesic who famously could not hold any memory longer than twenty seconds.

Analyzing Brain Data using Sea Slugs

Scientists say our brains may not be as complicated as we once thought – and they’re using sea slugs to prove it.

What happens in the brain during movement is currently only well understood for small, dedicated neural circuits. The sea slug brain has some of the complexity of higher organisms, yet has large neurons that make it possible to record a substantial amount of what is happening in the brain during movement.

Neuron 2015.03.005

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