Brain Science projects

Nerve cellsWhile the United Nations General Assembly prepared for its sometimes divisive annual general debate on Monday, a less official United Nations of Brain Projects met nearby in a display of international amity and unbounded enthusiasm for the idea that transnational cooperation can, must, and will, at last, explain the brain.

The tribe of some 400 neuroscientists, computational biologists, physicists, physicians, ethicists, government science counselors, and private funders convened at The Rockefeller University on Manhattan’s Upper East Side in New York City. The Coordinating Global Brain Projects gathering was mandated by the U.S. Congress in a 2015 law funding the U.S. Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative. The meeting aimed to synchronize the explosion of big, ambitious neuroscience efforts being launched from Europe to China. Nearly 50 speakers from more than a dozen countries explained how their nations are plumbing brain science; all seemed eager to be part of the as-yet unmapped coordination that they hope will lead to a mellifluous symphony rather than a cacophony of competing chords.

“We are really seeing international cooperation at a level that we have not seen before, ” said Rockefeller’s Cori Bargmann, a neurobiologist who with Rafael Yuste of Columbia University convened the meeting with the backing of the universities, the National Science Foundation (NSF), and the Kavli Foundation, a private funder of neuroscience and nanoscience. Bargmann and Yuste have been integral to planning the BRAIN Initiative launched by President Barack Obama in the spring of 2013, which, along with the European Human Brain Project, started the new push for large-scale neuroscience initiatives. “This could be historic, ” Yuste said. “I could imagine out of this meeting that groups of people could get together and start international collaborations the way the astronomers and the physicists have been doing for decades.”

Many of the plans and aspirations presented at the meeting were familiar, not least from an April prequel that gathered some 60 neuroscientists at Johns Hopkins University and laid the groundwork for the current gathering. They included China’s ambitious 15-year plan aimed at understanding the neural basis of cognitive functions while developing the tools to diagnose and treat brain diseases early; it is likely to be funded with $1 billion over the first 10 years. There was also excitement about a digital, cloud-based storehouse of troves of neuroscience data that would be accessible to all. This international repository was later the subject of discussion at a meeting of scientific diplomats from several countries, convened at the United Nations itself, and attended by U.S. Department of State representatives as well as by France Córdova, the director of NSF.

At the Rockefeller meeting, an important impetus behind the big ambitions—the quest to decipher the gamut of human brain diseases that are still incredibly poorly understood—was evident in the room. “It’s purely getting at the [brain] circuits that’s going to tell us about schizophrenia, autism, multiple psychiatric disorders, ” Walter Koroshetz, the director of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland, told the assembled scientists. Yet our current neuroscience tools are so rudimentary, he noted, that watching the brain function in real time is like “trying to understand what Gone with the Wind is [about] by watching it one pixel at a time over and over again.”

The quest to understand the brain is complicated, too, by the profound ethical questions that will inevitably arise as the science moves forward, from worries about the potential hacking of brain implants to the notion that technological advances will ultimately make mind control possible. These are questions that can’t be tackled too soon, one speaker urged. “We should not take an attitude of ‘Wake me up when it gets interesting, ’” said Martha Farah, the director of the Center for Neuroscience & Society at the University of Pennsylvania. “Where we start, what we do at the beginning, affects the end.”

The participants, from at least a score of mostly wealthy countries, were also reminded that the ambitious agenda they are forging needs to embrace developing countries. “How can these already well-established brain projects help colleagues in developing countries like my own?” asks Mohammad Mustafa Herzallah, a researcher based at Rutgers University, Newark, in New Jersey representing the Palestinian Neuroscience Initiative.

You might also like

The Human Brain Project Video Overview
The Human Brain Project Video Overview
Human brain project -studium generale
Human brain project -studium generale
Human BRAIN Initiative will require super computer network
Human BRAIN Initiative will require super computer network ...
The Human Brain Project - Video Overview - YouTube
The Human Brain Project - Video Overview - YouTube
Elenco Electronics Inc Snap Circuits Jr. SC-100 Electronics Discovery Kit
Toy (Elenco Electronics Inc)
  • Electrical parts provide students grades 2 and up (age 7+) with hands-on experience designing and building models of working electrical circuits
  • Snap-together parts require no tools and ensure correct connections
  • Includes 30 parts, and instructions for over 100 projects, including working models of a photo sensor, a flashing light, and an adjustable-volume siren
  • Requires 2 AA batteries (sold separately)
  • Awards: The National Parenting Center-Seal of Approval, Dr. Toy 100 Best Children s Products, Dr Toy Best Educational Products
  • Valuable component to a rounded STEM curriculum
  • Build working models of a photo sensor, a flashing light, and an adjustable-volume siren. More than 100 exciting projects in all with included 30+ snap together...
  • Electrical components provide students ages 8+ with hands-on experience designing and building models of working electrical circuits
  • Clear and concise illustrated manual included and available online
OWI OWI 6-in-1 Educational Solar Kit
Toy (OWI)
  • Great for first time science experimenters
  • Illustrates how light energy from the sun can be transformed to electrical energy and mechanical motion
  • BEWARE OF FAKE MERCHANDISE: OWI does not license to any companies in Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia or China. OWI PRODUCTS ARE ONLY PRODUCED IN TAIWAN
  • Learn how solar energy can be used to generate electricity
Owi Incorporated OWI The Solar System Solar Kit
Hobby (Owi Incorporated)
  • Young astronomers will delight in OWI s newest Mini Solar Kit
  • Planets orbit around the solar-paneled sun that drives a motor and the planets actually move
  • Hands-on lesson about how solar power drives a motor
  • 6 colors of opaque acrylic paint, plus brush - for the perfect combination of science and creativity
4M 4M Volcano Making Kit
Toy (4M)
  • The Volcano Making Kit is a hands-on science project that creates a simulated erupting volcano.
  • This kit includes fast drying plaster, volcano mold, paint, paint brush and stir stick.
  • Detailed instructions for use and care are included.
  • Requires vinegar and baking soda for eruption (not included).
  • Recommended for ages 8 years and up.
  • Challenge your child s imagination with 4M toys and kits.
  • 4M educational toys cover a wide range of educational subjects and include science kits, arts and crafts kits, robotics kits, and more.
  • 4M offers a wide range of toys and kits to let you build a clock, crochet a placemat, or turn your room into a planetarium--all in the name of making learning fun.
Hewlett Packard Inkjet Printers HP Envy 5540 Wireless All-in-One Photo Printer with Mobile Printing, Instant Ink ready (K7C85A)
CE (Hewlett Packard Inkjet Printers)
  • Main functions of this HP color inkjet photo printer: copy, scan, wireless printing, AirPrint, two-sided duplex printing, touchscreen, Instant Ink ready so you ll...
  • Mobile printing: print from anywhere using your smartphone or tablet with the free HP ePrint app, easily print from your iPhone or iPad with AirPrint, print even...
  • The built-in photo tray lets you print 4x6-inch photos in brilliant color without changing paper.Paper sizes supported: Letter, 4 x 6 in, 5 x 7 in, 8 x 10 in, No...
  • Borderless photos are printed right to the edge of the paper. You get beautiful photo prints with no trimming! Scan to email: Save time by sending scanned documents...
  • Save up to 50% on Ink with HP Instant Ink: ordered by your printer and delivered to your door before you run out (optional subscription required). Use Original HP...

Copyright © . All Rights Reserved