NIH Blueprint: The Human Connectome Project

HCP Data Releases

Recent Updates:

Over a 3-year span (2012-2015), the Human Connectome Project (HCP) is scanning 1,200 healthy adult subjects. Our goal is to map region-to-region structural and functional connections of the human brain: the "human connectome."

Update: March 2014 MR Data Patch | Mar 2014
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Summary: The Human Connectome Project (HCP) has made several important updates to the fMRI data released for Q1-Q3. This patch addresses several known issues with Task fMRI analysis data, physiological data, and other areas. This patch also includes all retroactive fixes that were released in the September 2013 patch. Also, volume-smoothed tfMRI cross-run analysis data is now released for individual subjects.

Full Update Announcement

MEG Initial Release | Mar 2014
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Summary: The MEG Initial (MEG1) release includes data from 14 MEG-scanned participants, which together comprise 10 full datasets of resting state (rMEG) and 10 of each of the three task-evoked protocols (tMEG: motor, working memory, and language processing). As part of the HCP protocol, MRI and behavioral/individual difference data has also been collected on the MEG1 release participants and is either currently released (3 subjects) or will be released (11 subjects) in the upcoming 500 Subjects Release. Several of the subjects included in the MEG1 release are monozygotic (MZ) twin pairs.

Full MEG Release Documentation

Update: Full Diffusion Release | Jan 2014
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Summary: The Human Connectome Project (HCP) is happy to report the release of Diffusion imaging data for all 215 subjects for which diffusion was collected from Quarters 1-3 (Q1, Q2, Q3). The release includes all unprocessed and preprocessed dMRI data for these subjects, some of whom are related. All unrelated subject groups available for quick download from ConnectomeDB now have complete data for all HCP MRI modalities.

Full Update Announcement

Q3 Data Release | Sep 2013
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Summary: The Q3 data release consists of multimodal MRI data collected from more than 85 healthy young adults scanned in Spring 2013. The current release expands the total (Q1-Q3) number of released healthy participant data for imaging and/or behavioral measures to more than 220.

Full Q3 Release Documentation

HCP Subjects

Our target number is 1,200 healthy adults, ages 22-35 (~100 scanned/quarter), whose race/ethnicity is representative of the US population. We are recruiting twins and their non-twin siblings in order to enable research on the variability and heritability of brain structure and connectivity.

HCP Protocols

MR datasets are collected from each participant during a 2-day visit to Washington University that includes a demographic survey, behavioral tests, and up to 5 MR scan sessions that include structural, functional (resting state and task) and diffusion imaging.

MEG datasets are collected from a subset of MR participants during a 1-day visit to Saint Louis University. Each visit includes a series imaging modalities including task and resting state.

We follow a Standard Operating Procedure for data collection and use the same Imaging Protocols for every participant.

Several types of data are available in this release:

MRI Data Types

  • Unprocessed NIFTI images for structural MRI, fMRI, dMRI
  • Minimally Preprocessed NIFTI images for structural MRI, fMRI, dMRI
  • ICA-FIX Denoised rfMRI data
  • Group Average Functional MRI Data on 40 unrelated subjects and 120 subjects, some of whom are related

MEG Data Types

  • Unprocessed MEG data in 4D Neuroimaging format
  • Co-registration information that allow coordinate transformations between individual subject MEG coordinate systems and the MNI coordinate system
  • Volume conduction model of the head and regular 3-D source models in MATLAB format

Scan and Subject Metadata

  • Task data scores in CSV format, and task stimuli in AVI format
  • Behavioral data scores in CSV format
  • E-Prime log files and physiological data in tab-delimited spreadsheets.
  • Additional modality-specific log and reference data

Warning: Big Data

The high-resolution image data collected on each HCP subject results in file sizes that are quite large. The currently released dataset (~25% of released data to come) takes up more than 7 TB of disk space. Therefore, if you choose to obtain HCP data via download, you should be prepared to experience long download times and to devote an appropriately large amount of disk space to housing the data.

We recommend that groups of users at the same institution organize themselves to obtain a single copy of HCP data for local distribution (via joint purchase of "Connectome in a Box" or a single download).

HCP data release versions can contain subtle differences that can affect your research.

We are releasing data as it is deemed to be "production-ready," as we want to be responsive to demand from the scientific community. However, there are still processes ongoing inside the WU-Minn HCP Consortium to improve our data processing. As such, it is imperative that users attempt to keep track of which version of data they are using, and to be cognizant about avoiding mixing old data with new in their research.

Users can track data improvements and ongoing known issues on the public HCP Data Wiki.

Q3 Diffusion Data Warning

Diffusion data, both unprocessed and preprocessed, is now available for all Q1-Q3 subjects for whom dMRI data was collected (215 subjects). These images were reconstructed using a new algorithm that yields significantly sharper images.

Due to differing noise (smoothness) properties, the dMRI data available as of the Q3 release should not be mixed in analyses with the dMRI data from the group of 40 unrelated Q1-Q2 subjects previously released in June 2013.

Get Updates on Data Releases

Sign up to receive announcements and/or join the HCP Data Users email discussion group, on our Contact Us page