NIH Blueprint: The Human Connectome Project

The Human Connectome Project

Mapping the human brain is one of the great scientific challenges of the 21st century. The Human Connectome Project (HCP) is tackling a key aspect of this challenge by elucidating the neural pathways that underlie brain function and behavior. Deciphering this amazingly complex wiring diagram will reveal much about what makes us uniquely human and what makes every person different from all others.

The consortium led by Washington University, University of Minnesota, and Oxford University (the WU-Minn HCP consortium) is comprehensively mapping human brain circuitry in a target number of 1200 healthy adults using cutting-edge methods of noninvasive neuroimaging. It will yield invaluable information about brain connectivity, its relationship to behavior, and the contributions of genetic and environmental factors to individual differences in brain circuitry and behavior.

Starting with the first quarterly (Q1) data release (March, 2013), HCP datasets are being made freely available to the scientific community. Four imaging modalities are used to acquire data with unprecedented resolution in space and time.  Resting-state functional MRI (rfMRI) and diffusion imaging (dMRI) provide information about brain connectivity. Task-evoked fMRI reveals much about brain function.  Structural MRI captures the shape of the highly convoluted cerebral cortex.  Behavioral data provides the basis for relating brain circuits to individual differences in cognition, perception, and personality.  In addition, a subset of participants will be studied using magnetoencephalography (MEG).

Successful charting of the human connectome in healthy adults will pave the way for future studies of brain circuitry during development and aging and in numerous brain disorders. In short, it will transform our understanding of the human brain in health and disease.

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Project Spotlight
  • HCP 1200 Subjects Data Release!

    Final release of new subjects, updated diffusion data for all subjects, 46 retest datasets, and 184 7T datasets. Access Data | Documentation.

  • 2017 HCP Course Registration Now Open

    The 2017 offering of "Exploring the Human Connectome" will be presented in Vancouver, right before OHBM. Registration is now open. Course Info | Register

  • Connectome Workbench 1.2.3 Released

    August 25, 2016 Update: A series of improvements and bugfixes has been released in time for the HCP Workshop. What's new? | Get Workbench

  • HCP Multi-modal Parcellation 1.0 Released

    HCP investigators publish maps of cortical brain regions at highest resolution to date in a new study in Nature. Read More | View Data in BALSA

  • 900 Subjects Connectome In A Box Now Available

    The full 64 TB of data available in the 900 subjects data release is now available as a set of Connectome In A Box hard drives. Order Today.

  • MEGConnectome Pipeline Update

    A new version of the MEGConnectome Pipeline, v3.0, has been released. Learn More

  • Netmats Megatrawl Analyses Released

    Explore analyses of relationships between rs-fcMRI and non-imaging measures with new visualization tools on ConnectomeDB. View Data (Login Required)

  • Improved Group Average Dense Connectome Available

    Release of a new 468-subject group average functional connectome, with corrections for the "Ring of Fire" processing phenomenon. Documentation | Download Data (Login Required)

  • Parcellation+Timeseries+Netmats rfMRI Data Release

    Resting-state fMRI analysis including group-ICA parcellations, individual subject node-timeseries and netmats. Documentation | Download.

  • New York Times Author goes inside the HCP scanner

    Author Jim Gorman provides an in-person perspective of how the Human Connectome Project collects data, and new ways of visualizing the result. Read More