Prof. Dr. med. Katrin Amunts | Next generation cyto- and myeloarchitectonics – challenges and perspectives in times of Big Data
Director of the Institute of Neuroscience and Medicine, INM-1, Research Centre Jülich
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Abstract: Cytoarchitecture is a concept that itself encompasses different aspects of brain organization – the many cell types with distinct morphology, molecular, genetic and connectional fingerprints, which are specifically arranged in layers, columns and areas. Axons form complex networks at the level of microcircuits or large cognitive system – myeloarchitecture. Korbinian Brodmann and Cecile & Oskar Vogt combined both aspects of brain organization about 100 years ago with insights from physiology, neurology, neurosurgery and genetics, to get deeper insights into brain structure and function. Going beyond this approach means to address brains microstructure in 3D, at the single cell level. This is a big data challenge, not only for whole brain models, but also for volume-of-interest-models resulting, e.g. from two-photon, light-sheet imaging or electron microscopy. To integrate the different findings, to make them accessible and comparable, requires to develop new tools for atlasing, data processing, analytics and visualisation. This is a challenge that is currently being addressed by the international brain initiatives to open new perspective for unravelling brain complexity.