RATIONALE

The mouse brain is a powerful animal model that has fueled neuroscience research for decades. In addition to being an accessible tool, its genetic profile is 90% identical to that of the human brain — enabling medical and pharmaceutical involvement.

 

Unfortunately — despite having a great deal of potential — the mouse brain is still poorly understood. The following challenges motivate our efforts to overcome this barrier:

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Complexity

Each of its ~100 million neurons receives an average of ~8,000 distinct inputs, many of which can reorganize in response to internal/external stimuli.

Speed

Some neurons can process information on a millisecond timescale, and require specialized tools to be studied with high spatiotemporal resolution.

Visibility

Optical instruments struggle with deep-brain imaging due to the tissue's opacity, disrupting efforts to study cortical structure and function in vivo.