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Transforming the understanding
and treatment of mental illnesses.

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The Brain Research Through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies® (BRAIN) Initiative

What is The BRAIN Initiative®?

The Brain Research Through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative  is aimed at revolutionizing our understanding of the brain through the development and sharing of novel neurotechnologies. By accelerating the development and application of innovative technologies, researchers hope to create a new dynamic picture of the brain that, for the first time, shows how individual cells and complex neural circuits interact in both time and space.

Why is The BRAIN Initiative a priority for NIMH?

Discoveries supported by the BRAIN Initiative will lay the foundation for developing novel treatments and interventions for mental illnesses. BRAIN Initiative-supported technologies are already disentangling the circuits and computations underlying complex behaviors and developing new tools for mapping neural connections.

The BRAIN Initiative is transforming our understanding of the brain. Funding from the initiative allows researchers to explore the full range of brain systems and cell and circuit function, discover novel and effective ways to collect and share data, and bring us closer to fully appreciating the complexity of the human brain.

What is NIMH’s role?

The Initiative is highly collaborative within the National Institutes of Health (NIH), across federal agencies, and with private organizations and the international scientific community.

The BRAIN Initiative  is managed by 10 institutes and co-led by NIMH and the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS). From its initial funding in 2014 through 2022, the NIH has supported more than 1,300 research awards totaling more than $3.0 billion.

Contact information

For additional information on the BRAIN Initiative, please contact Andrea C. Beckel-Mitchener, Ph.D., deputy director of the NIH BRAIN Initiative.

Learn more about The NIH BRAIN Initiative

Additional resources

Science News and Research Highlights

Last Reviewed: December 2022