A Road Map and Dictionary for the Brain
Read the full article A Road Map and Dictionary for the Brain at NeuroscienceNews.com.
By providing a standardized nomenclature for the architecture of insect brains, UA neuroscientists will help improve studies of human brain function and disease.
When you’re talking about something as complex as the brain, the task isn’t any easier if the vocabulary being used is just as complex. An international collaboration of neuroscientists has not only tripled the number of identified brain structures, but created a simple lexicon to talk about them, which will be enormously helpful for future research on brain function and disease.
The research is in Neuron. (full access paywall)
Research: “A Systematic Nomenclature for the Insect Brain” by Kei Ito, Kazunori Shinomiya, Masayoshi Ito, J. Douglas Armstrong, George Boyan, Volker Hartenstein, Steffen Harzsch, Martin Heisenberg, Uwe Homberg, Arnim Jenett, Haig Keshishian, Linda L. Restifo, Wolfgang Rössler, Julie H. Simpson, Nicholas J. Strausfeld, Roland Strauss, Leslie B. Vosshall, and Insect Brain Name Working Group in Neuron. doi:10.1016/j.neuron.2013.12.017
Image: 1 - Multiple labeling with antibodies specific against various neural proteins reveals different regions, cells, fibers and connections of the brain of the fruit fly, Drosophila. Shown here is the left hemisphere seen from the front. Credit Kei Ito et al.
2 - When studied with advanced microscopic and imaging techniques, the brain of a fruit fly reveals astounding complexity, showing its composition by many discrete building blocks called “neuropils,” each comprising one or more complex neuronal circuits. Credit Kei Ito et al.
3 - Blueprint of a fly brain: The researchers identified the building blocks of the insect brain and standardized their nomenclature to provide neuroscientists with a common foundation for research and communication. The colored units are neuropils - portions of the brain that serve particular functions, such as collecting and processing input from sensory organs, making decisions about behaviors and storing memory. Credit Kei Ito.