Home Community Google Researchers Launch an Ambitious Project to Map Mouse Brain: Paving the Way for Understanding Neurological Disorders

Google Researchers Launch an Ambitious Project to Map Mouse Brain: Paving the Way for Understanding Neurological Disorders

Google Researchers Launch an Ambitious Project to Map Mouse Brain: Paving the Way for Understanding Neurological Disorders

In a bid to unravel the complexities of the human brain and make clear the origins of assorted mental illnesses and neurological disorders, Google Research, in collaboration with a consortium of esteemed institutions, has launched into an ambitious five-year, $33 million project. The enterprise goals to pioneer advancements in the sector of connectomics, which seeks to chart the intricate network of cellular connections inside the brain. This groundbreaking initiative, supported by the Brain Research Through Advancing Progressive Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative on the National Institutes of Health (NIH), is led by researchers from Harvard University, with contributions from the Allen Institute, MIT, Cambridge University, Princeton University, and Johns Hopkins University, together with guidance from advisers at HHMI’s Janelia Research Campus.

The first challenge before the scientific community lies in comprehending the workings of the human brain, a marvel of computational complexity composed of billions of cells. Mental illnesses and neurodegenerative diseases, including dementia, remain in mystery as a result of an absence of comprehensive understanding of the brain’s intricate network. The nascent field of connectomics holds immense promise in unraveling these mysteries, potentially offering avenues for effective treatments.

The present enterprise will deal with mapping a minute portion (2-3%) of the mouse brain, honing in on the hippocampal region. This area is pivotal in memory encoding, attention, and spatial navigation. By charting the connectivity of this important segment, the researchers aspire to put the groundwork for future endeavors targeting a comprehensive understanding of your complete mouse brain and, by extension, the human brain.

In 2021, Google Research and its partners at Harvard achieved a major milestone by mapping one cubic millimeter of the human brain, a dataset referred to as the H01 dataset. Nonetheless, mapping your complete human brain’s connectome necessitates an unprecedented amount of knowledge – as much as a zettabyte, currently beyond the capabilities of existing technology. Specializing in the mouse brain, which offers a more manageable scope, presents a useful opportunity to glean insights relevant to human brain function and dysfunction.

To undertake this endeavor, the project will amass a unprecedented dataset, encompassing roughly 25,000 terabytes or 25 petabytes of brain data. This dataset, slated to be one in all the most important within the realm of biology, eclipses the size of previous connectome mapping projects. In perspective, the info collected from mapping the mouse hippocampal region alone is comparable to greater than 48,800 Pixel phones stacked as high because the Empire State Constructing.

The enterprise also encompasses the event of tools and technologies tailored to managing massive connectomic datasets. These include flood-filling networks, which utilize deep learning to trace neurons’ paths in three-dimensional brain volumes, and self-supervised learning technology, SegCLR, to extract vital insights from segmented volumes mechanically. Core connectomics infrastructure will probably be fortified to handle the unprecedented scale of knowledge.

In conclusion, Google Research’s audacious endeavor to map the mouse brain represents a pivotal step toward unraveling the enigma of neurological disorders. Through the collaborative efforts of leading research institutions and the appliance of cutting-edge technologies, this project guarantees to deepen our understanding of the brain and holds the potential to revolutionize treatments for a spectrum of neurological conditions. Because the initiative gains momentum, the scientific community eagerly anticipates the revelations that peering right into a mouse’s mind may unveil about our own.

Take a look at the Google Blog. All Credit For This Research Goes To the Researchers on This Project. Also, don’t forget to hitch our 30k+ ML SubReddit, 40k+ Facebook Community, Discord Channel, and Email Newsletter, where we share the most recent AI research news, cool AI projects, and more.

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Niharika is a Technical consulting intern at Marktechpost. She is a 3rd yr undergraduate, currently pursuing her B.Tech from Indian Institute of Technology(IIT), Kharagpur. She is a highly enthusiastic individual with a keen interest in Machine learning, Data science and AI and an avid reader of the most recent developments in these fields.

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