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Researchers at the Allen Institute for brain science have presented new results of the CCF project, the purpose of which is to build the most complete three-dimensional Atlas of the mouse brain. The results of their work, scientists reported in the article of the journal Cell.
The new card is a kind of neurobiological equivalent of your phone’s GPS. Instead of having to manually search for the location on a paper map, people today mostly use a GPS that shows their location. The same function is performed and the new Atlas of the brain. This structure, according to scientists, is designed to serve as a guide for neuroscientists.
Mice are widely used in biomedical research. Their brain contains approximately 67 millions of cells in hundreds of different fields. As the neurobiological data sets are becoming more and more complex common spatial map of the brain becomes increasingly important as the ability to accurately record a variety of different types of data in three-dimensional space for comparison and detection of correlations.
Atlas of the brain in the third version of the draft CCF is based on the first part, published 2016, which was a model of the cerebral cortex. The previous version of the Atlas was a three-dimensional map at a lower resolution, in contrast, presents now, model. A new model of the brain has such high resolution that allows to pinpoint the location of individual cells. A previous version was presented in 2017, and since then several teams of neuroscientists have been able to use them.
To make such a computer simulation, the researchers broke the tiny brain of a virtual 3D-blocks — voxels and each block assigned a unique coordinate. The data that formed the basis of this three-dimensional design, were obtained through the analysis of the General anatomy of the brain nearly 1,700 different animals. The team then placed each of the voxels to one of the hundreds of different known regions of the mouse brain, carefully drawing the boundaries between different regions.
The researchers said that future versions of the Atlas are likely to be created using machine learning or other forms of automated processing of information, and not laborious manual labor, which was used in the presented phase of the project.
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