NIH Awards $46M in Grants Under Brain-Mapping Project

October 2, 2014 in News

On Tuesday, NIH announced an initial round of $46 million in grant funding to support the Obama administration’s brain-mapping initiative, which aims to help researchers discover new ways to treat Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, stroke and other neurological conditions, FierceHealthIT reports (Dvorak, FierceHealthIT, 9/30).

Background

The Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies, or BRAIN, project will receive $100 million in funding as it launches this year.

The research initiative involves private institutions and several public agencies, including:

  • The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency;
  • The National Science Foundation;
  • NIH (iHealthBeat, 4/3/13); and
  • FDA.

Details of NIH Funding

On Tuesday, NIH announced that the initial $46 million in funding will be distributed to more than 100 researchers across 15 states and several countries (FierceHealthIT, 9/30).

Specifically, the grants will fund 58 different projects, including efforts to: 

  • Identify complex brain circuits with DNA barcodes (NIH press release);
  • Track the entire nervous system while in motion (FierceHealthIT, 9/30);
  • Develop laser systems to control the activity of specific cells and circuits in the brain;
  • Build a wearable PET scanner to observe the brain while people are physically moving;
  • Categorize the various types of cells used in brain circuits for vision and other specific sensations; and
  • Adapt an MRI to show individual brain cell activity (Hamilton, “Shots,” NPR, 9/30).
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