BRAIN Initiative Cell Census Network (BICCN) - Brain Cell Data Center (U24)

Funding Agency:
National Institutes of Health

This Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) intends to support a Brain Cell Data Center (BCDC) that will work with other BICCN Centers and interested researchers to establish a web-accessible information system to capture, store, analyze, curate, and display all data and metadata on brain cell types, and their connectivity. The BCDC is expected to: (1) lead the effort to establish spatial and semantic standards for managing heterogeneous brain cell census data types and information; (2) lead the effort to collect and register multimodal brain cell census data to common brain coordinate systems; (3) generate searchable 2D and 3D digital brain atlases for cell census data; and (4) generate a unified and comprehensive brain cell knowledge base that integrates all existing brain cell census data and information across diverse repositories.  A central goal of this and the three companion FOAs is to build a brain cell census resource that can be widely used throughout the research community.

The BICCN will be composed of a group of Centers and Collaboratories supported via four companion FOAs: Comprehensive (U19) Center(s) supported via RFA-MH-17-225, the FOA being described here, that will focus on building up a comprehensive mouse brain cell atlas; Specialized (U01) Collaboratories via RFA-MH-17-230 that will contribute cell census data for endpoints in the mouse brain not otherwise covered in the U19 Center(s); Specialized (U01) Collaboratories via RFA-MH-17-210 that will begin to collect cell census data from human or non-human primate brains; and finally, the U24 BRAIN Cell Data Center (BCDC) via RFA-MH-17-215 that will integrate, visualize, and disseminate the cell census data generated by the U19 and U01 Centers and Collaboratories as well as create a brain cell knowledge base. The NIH expects that the BICCN will operate as a cooperative network to promote collaboration and coordination with any research entities that have similar goals. It is expected that funded projects in the BICCN will work together to achieve the overall goals. This will include regular meetings and other coordinated activities within the BICCN as well as in the BRAIN Initiative more broadly. Thus the BICCN will leverage existing atlases and common coordinate systems to facilitate collaborative efforts for the data annotation and 3D spatial mapping.


  • Letter of Intent Due Date(s): December 23, 2016
  • Application Due Date(s): January 23, 2017

RFA-MH-17-215 Expiration Date January 24, 2017




Engineering and Physical Sciences
Environmental & Life Sciences
Medical - Basic Science
Medical - Clinical Science
Medical - Translational

External Deadline

January 23, 2017