“This video is the first time scientists have ever been able to image the whole brain of a vertebrate creature in such a way that you can see individual cells and simultaneously how they’re firing and behaving in real time. This is how the brain really, really works—and it’s amazing.
The research, published in Nature Methods, explains how scientists from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute Janelia Farm Research Campus were able to use a technique called high-speed light sheet microscopy to image the activity of 80 percent of the neurons in the brain of a zebra fish larva. They were able to capture images once every 1.3 seconds—which, as Nature explains, is a speed approximate to neural activity patterns in the brain.”
Read more and watch the full video here. For more information via Nature Methods go here, and here.
On 11 April 2011, the Allen Institute announced that their human brain map is complete. Above, for instance, is a 3-D snapshot of all the locations in the brain where the Prozac’s biochemical target is expressed. Researchers can click on each dot and see which genes are expressed in those specific areas, in addition to the underlying biochemistry.
Allan Jones, the CEO of the Institute, was kind enough to answer a few questions about how the map was created and what it means.