Scientists Get a Head Start on BRAIN Initiative

Neuroscientists from around the country are wrapping up a meeting today in drizzly Arlington, Virginia, in which they discussed possible directions for the Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative—a $100 million federal investment in brain research that has yet to be clearly defined. This meeting is focused on how the project should address the physical and mathematical principles underlying brain function. An open call for white papers on "Major Obstacles Impeding Progress in Brain Science" inspired responses from more than 70 prominent neuroscientists. The scientists cite problems that need to be addressed, such as to"increase the density and longevity of neural recordings in untethered, freely behaving animals" and come up with "beautiful models" of brain function that can be mathematically analyzed.