Mapping the Information Highway in the Brain Knowing Neurons

Mapping the Information Highway in the Brain

It’s hard to imagine life without Google Maps nowadays.  We use the interactive map daily to find out how to get from point A to point B.  Wouldn’t it be great if there were an online map to guide neuroscientists to study the brain?  In the newest issue of Cell, researchers from University of Southern California published a project mapping the neural networks of the mouse cortex, and they call it the Mouse Connectome Project (MCP).Continue reading

EyeWire via Knowing Neurons

EyeWire: A Game To Map The Brain

Solving the mysteries of the connectome may require something more powerful than a supercomputer.  The makers of EyeWire think that it’s you who can help map the brain!  This game was invented in Sebastian Seung’s Computational Neuroscience Lab at MIT and now has over 70,000 players from over 130 countries!  The best part is that the game doesn’t require a scientific background, so anyone can play!  Join the EyeWire community and be a part of neuroscience discovery!Continue reading

Connectomics by Knowing Neurons

Connectomics: Mapping the Brain

The human brain is filled with approximately 100 billion neurons, each of which makes a multitude of connections to neighboring neurons.  The diversity of these neurons and vast interconnections facilitate processes such as those involved in decision making, evoking a memory, riding a bike, or simply reading this sentence.  Incorrect wiring of these neurons may be the basis of some mental disorders and deficits.  To understand how the structure of neural networks mediates function, researchers have emphasized the development of techniques to identify how every neuron is intimately connected to its neighbor neurons.  And with this, the field of connectomics is born.Continue reading