NSF Major Research Instrumentation Grant
Principal Investigator Chantal E. Stern, DPhil
The National Science Foundation has awarded BU $1.6 million for the purchase of a Siemens 3T MAGNETOM Prisma MRI scanner for human structural and functional neuroimaging research. The new scanner is housed in the Cognitive Neuroimaging Center (CNC) at the new Rajen Kilachand Center for Integrated Life Sciences & Engineering. Development of the research facilities within the Kilachand Center, and more specifically the CNC, have provided Boston University neuroscience researchers with state-of-the-art facilities as a shared, core facility for research, with the goal of developing an understanding of brain function that bridges across multiple scales – from the cellular level, to the systems level, to the level of human cognition and behavior. Our aim is to understand cognition and behavior in terms of understanding the underlying brain networks, the neural circuits within these brain systems, and the cellular and molecular components of these circuits. To reach this goal will require multidisciplinary interaction between scientists developing and using cutting-edge research experimental methodology with advanced computational techniques, including advanced neuroimaging technology. BU researchers have developed strong collaborations, allowing us to bridge the gap from animal- to human-level research. The PI and senior investigators have publications and a proven track record of multidisciplinary collaborations that cut across traditional boundaries and allow for integration of data across levels. The acquisition of a Siemens 3T MAGNETOM Prisma MRI system and its placement within a multidisciplinary center will foster neuroscience research that does not adhere to the traditional human/animal divide, allowing us to develop models that link the understanding of neural circuits to cognition and behavior.