Multi-scale models of the rat and mouse brain integrate models of ion channels, single cells, microcircuits, brain regions, and brain systems at different levels of granularity (molecular models, morphologically detailed cellular models, and abstracted point neuron models).
Blue Brain’s reconstruction and related simulations are made possible by a comprehensive software ecosystem for each step in the reconstruction and simulation process. Blue Brain systematically releases open source software.
The online tools available to assist users with simulation neuroscience are a collection of platforms and atlases from the Blue Brain and our collaborators.
Data is of vital importance to the study of the Brain. For neuroscientists in this section, there are ion channel recordings, morphological reconstructions, electrical recordings from neocorticol neurons and molecular properties of neurons. These are available on Blue Brain platforms and the Human Brain Project Brain Simulation platform.
Detailed neuron models consisting of thousands of synapses are key for understanding the computational properties of single neurons and large neuronal networks, and for interpreting experimental results. Simulations of these models are however, computationally expensive (using lots of computing hours), which considerably decreases their utility. For the first time, Scientists at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the EPFL Blue Brain Project have formulated a unique analytical approach to the challenge of reducing the complexity of neuron models while retaining their key input/output functions and their computational capabilities. ‘Neuron_Reduce’ is a new computational tool that provides the scientific community with a straightforward capability to simplify complex neuron models of any cell type and still faithfully preserve its input-output properties while significantly reducing simulation run-time.
In order to improve performance and benefit from new computing architectures the EPFL Blue Brain Project has isolated the core functionalities of the NEURON simulator and optimized them into a new simulator engine CoreNEURON. In a paper published in Frontiers in Neuroinformatics, the Blue Brain explains how CoreNEURON helps existing NEURON users to simulate their models faster, better utilize computing resources and ultimately help to deliver science sooner.