Scientists Digitally Reconstruct Section of Rat Brain

A large international team of researchers from the Blue Brain Project has digitally reconstructed and simulated a slice of a juvenile rat’s neocortex, an area of the brain unique to mammals that composes the top-most layer of the cerebral cortex. Simulation of electrical activity in a virtual brain slice formed from seven unitary digital reconstructions of neocortical microcircuits. Image credit: BBP / EPFL. The team, led by Dr Henry Markram of the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne, Switzerland, created a detailed computer representation of about a third of a cubic millimeter of brain tissue containing about 30,000 neurons connected by nearly 40 million synapses. The scientists performed tens of thousands of experiments on neurons and synapses in the neocortex of young rats and catalogued each type of neuron and each…

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