Automated Neuron Tracing and 3D Reconstruction Software

Award Information
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Branch: N/A
Contract: 2R44MH072063-05A1
Agency Tracking Number: MH072063
Amount: $2,399,830.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2010
Solicitation Year: 2010
Solicitation Topic Code: NIMH
Solicitation Number: PHS2010-2
Small Business Information
DUNS: 787008242
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 (802) 288-9290
Business Contact
Phone: (802) 288-9290
Research Institution
DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): We propose to develop NeuroAutomatica, an innovative, automated neuron reconstruction software platform that provides analysis tools for automated quantitative analysis of neuronal structure. The software will provide multi-scalar information about multiple individual neurons in close proximity, including dendritic spines. Providing this innovative functionality will help research in important fields such as neurodegenerative diseases, learning, and memory. NeuroAutomatica will enable sophisticated and detailed analysis of neuronal structure that is currently unavailable. Furthermore, it will increase the pace of research technology by automating some analyses which are now painstakingly manually performed. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: Recent research has pointed to the importance of the smallest element of a neuron's architecture-the dendritic spine-where it is hypothesized that critical structural changes occur to underlie changes in cellular function responsible for processing a continuous influx and storage of information. Thus, dendritic spines have become a central target in research focusing on learning and memory and, in particular, on the prevention of cognitive decline in neurodegenerative diseases. Furthermore, new advances in imaging and physiological experiments have led to investigations into neuronal circuits. Our proposed software will enable the structural analysis of these networks. NeuroAutomatica will accelerate the pace of discovery and understanding in basic neuroscience research by providing an observer independent software system capable of accurately and efficiently reconstructing neurons, including dendritic spines, in dense networks.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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