Wednesday, April 01, 2009


Neuroscientists propose project to comprehensively map mammalian brain circuits

Mitra and his co-authors therefore advocate for "a concerted effort" to complete a first-draft circuit map of the entire mouse brain within two to three years, as a first step to mapping vertebrate brain architecture across species. The proposed project would ideally be pursued simultaneously by neuroscientists at multiple institutions according to standardized protocols. "In this respect," says Jason Bohland, Ph.D., a postdoctoral neuroscience researcher at CSHL and the paper's lead author, "it would be analogous to the multi-institution effort to sequence the human genome, with the important distinction that our brain-circuit map could be completed much more rapidly and would cost a small fraction of the genome project - as little as a few million dollars ranging up to perhaps $20 million, depending on the redundancy in coverage that we commit to."