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David C. Van Essen; The Human Connectome Project. Journal of Vision 2011;11(15):8. doi: 10.1167/11.15.8.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
The Human Connectome Project (HCP) offers an exciting opportunity to characterize brain circuitry and its variability in healthy adults. A consortium of investigators led by Washington University, University of Minnesota recently began a 5-year project to characterize the human connectome in a large cohort of twins and their non-twin siblings. Structural and functional connectivity will be charted at high resolution in each individual using diffusion MRI and resting-state fMRI, respectively. Task-evoked fMRI, MEG/EEG, and behavioral data will also be acquired. Advanced analysis methods, including novel approaches to brain parcellation, will enable mapping of functionally distinct parcels in individual subjects and in the overall population. Comparisons across subjects will reveal aspects of brain circuitry which are related to particular behavioral capacities and which are heritable or related to specific genetic variants. Data from the HCP will be made freely available to the neuroscience community. A user-friendly informatics platform will enable investigators around the world to carry out many types of data mining on these freely accessible, information-rich datasets. Since vision is the dominant functional modality in the human brain, the HCP will generate an enormous amount of information about circuitry of the human visual system, especially visual cortex.
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