The idea of “Brainbow”

So this idea of “brainbow” really interested me as it was mentioned in class. I feel like I remember it vaguely mentioned in the Neuroscience course but then no true details were ever presented. So I did a bit of research and found that basically this “brainbow” makes it possible to map each neuron with a distinctive color. Pretty cool I thought, but then I thought “Wouldn’t they run out of colors?” Anyways, as of 2007 there were more than 100 differently mapped neurons which can be simultaneously mapped. The technique was developed at Harvard, by permitting visual resolution of individual brightly colored neurons, the variety of combination of three or more fluorescent proteins in neurons can generate many different hues, charting the circuitry of the brain and nervous system.

This is one big step up from the 1873 Golgi method which only had two colors. With this new method of reading neurons and observing their ways, various diseases are more apt to treated, if not cured. Currently most studies are examining the accuracy and reliability of this new method and no results of studies only rely on this method, it is usually just an extra piece of information. It has been found through a study by Mishchenko, that large neural circuits can be mapped with great accuracy, in scalable manner, using fast optical tools, and straightforward image processing.

Pretty cool to think of what this “brainbow” could lead to. I wonder how colorful my brain would look.

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