News and Highlights
We would like to welcome our newest member country, Malaysia, to INCF! The Malaysian Node is based at the Centre for Intelligent Signal and Imaging Research (CISIR), Universiti Teknologi Petronas (UTP), and activities will initially focus on community building and starting collaborations within clinical neuroscience.
The NeuroElectro project aims to extract information about the electrophysiological properties of neurons reported in research papers and place them into a publicly available database that links specific neuron types to measurements of their biophysical properties, with associated metadata, across the literature. The project leads have now published a paper in the Journal of Neurophysiology where they use NeuroElectro data to compare brain-wide neurophysiological diversity of mammalian neurons, including corrections for variability caused by different experimental conditions.
BigNeuron is a community effort to define and advance the state of the art of single neuron reconstruction and analysis and create a common platform for analyzing 3D neuronal structure, led by Allen Institute for Brain Science and uniting some of the leading research and computing centers around the world, including INCF. The results will include a large set of open-source, community-based tools for neuroscience studies, standardized protocols, and a rich library of morphological feature definitions and algorithms.
We will have a booth at the 2015 Brain Forum in Lausanne, March 30 - April 1, where you can meet representatives from the INCF Swiss Node and the Secretariat in the exhibitions area. Are you working on an interesting project, or maybe looking for new collaborators? Come by and talk to us!
Registration is now open for the INCF-supported OHBM hackathon, which will be held June 12-14 at the Hawaii Convention Center, just before the Organization for Human Brain Mapping conference on July 14-18. More information on the event is available at brainhack.org, where it is also possible to view and submit ideas for projects to be worked on during the hackathon days.
We just published our first newsletter for 2015, with updates on Google Summer of Code, the next INCF Nodes Workshop, the OHBM hackathon, and other community events and news. There is also a list of recent interesting publications in neuroscience and neuroinformatics. And we switched to a new platform, which also works on mobile phones! You can read the newsletter here:
Introducing the major open questions of neuroscience and teach state-of–the-art techniques for analyzing and modeling neuroscience data sets, this course is designed for students at the graduate level and researchers with background in a quantitative field such as engineering, mathematics, physics or computer science who may or may not have a specific neuroscience background. The course runs July 6-17, and is organized by members of the INCF US Node. Apply latest April 6th.
Python is quickly becoming a standard tool for the programming neuroscientist. The INCF German Node (G-Node) is organizing the summer school "Advanced Scientific Programming in Python" together with the BCCN Munich and the Graduate School of Systemic Neurosciences, for Master or PhD students and Post-docs from all areas of science. Competence in Python or in another language such as Java, C/C++, MATLAB, or Mathematica is absolutely required. The course will be held August 31 - September 5 in Munich, Germany. Apply latest March 31.
INCF has been accepted as a mentoring organization for Google Summer of Code, our fifth year running! Project ideas and mentors have been recruited from our community, mainly our Nodes and Programs, and range from simulators and computational modelling to tools for neuroimaging, EEG data management and connectivity analysis. Students can apply for projects from March 16th.
The Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (FNIH) has selected Karl Deisseroth (Stanford), as the 2015 winner of the Lurie Prize in Biomedical Sciences. Dr. Deisseroth is being recognized for leading the development of optogenetics, a technology for controlling cells with light to determine function, as well as for CLARITY, a method for transforming intact organs into transparent polymer gels to allow visualization of biological structures with high resolution and detail.
CAMP (Computational Approaches to Memory and Plasticity at NCBS, Bangalore) is a 16-day summer school on the theory and simulation of learning, memory and plasticity in the brain. It takes place June 27 - July 12, and is co-organized by Indian Node members at the NCBS in Bangalore. The curriculum combines lectures with hands-on exercises. International applicants from experimental and theoretical backgrounds are welcome. Two letters of reference needed. Applications are open until March 1.
Frontiers in Neuroinformatics | Efficient neuroimaging workflows and parallel processing using Matlab and XML
Frontiers in Neuroinformatics | A new open source MATLAB toolchain for visual stimulation and analysis of two-photon calcium neuronal imaging data
A recent study in humans analysed the effects of γ-band-specific entrainment of cortical areas and found that interhemispheric connectivity could be increased by artificially increasing interhemispheric coherence (that is, in-phase stimulation) and reduced by anti-phase stimulation.
Mirror neurons—brain cells that are activated when viewing the actions of another—have been implicated in everything from obesity to autism. While many of the claims made about these cells remain to be tested, they continue to persist in popular culture, much to the frustration of those working in the field. Christian Keysers considers an attempt to set the record straight in a review of The Myth of Mirror Neurons: The Real Neuroscience of Communication and Cognition.
In Nature, researchers explain a technique, called expansion microscopy, that involves physically inflating biological tissues using a material more commonly found in baby nappies (diapers).
The Bernstein Conference is the Bernstein Network's central forum that has developed over time into the largest annual Computational Neuroscience conference in Europe, attracting an international audience from across the world. It is organized by members of the Bernstein Network at annually changing locations and offers a broad overview over the topics of Computational Neuroscience and Neurotechnology. The next conference is organized by the Bernstein Center Heidelberg-Manheim and will take place in Heidelberg. The call for Satellite Workshop proposals will open in January 2015.
PyNN (pronounced 'pine' ) is a simulator-independent language for building neuronal network models.For a list of the main changes between PyNN 0.7 and 0.8, see the release notes for the 0.8 alpha 1 release.
In Frontiers in Neuroinformatics, researchers introduce The Decoding Toolbox (TDT) which represents a user-friendly, powerful and flexible package for multivariate analysis of functional brain imaging data.
In Nature Neuroscience, researchers have developed an organic material–based, ultraconformable, biocompatible and scalable neural interface array (the ‘NeuroGrid’) that can record both local field potentials(LFPs) and action potentials from superficial cortical neurons without penetrating the brain surface.
The INCF Secretariat is now looking for a friendly, positive and service-oriented individual to join our team as a systems/cloud engineer.