Baby Connectome Project

The Baby Connectome Project (BCP) is a four-year study of children from birth through five years of age, intended to provide a better understanding of how the brain develops from infancy through early childhood and the factors that contribute to healthy brain development. This project is a research initiative of the Neuroscience Blueprint -- a cooperative effort among the 15 NIH Institutes, Centers and Offices that support neuroscience research. The BCP is supported by Wyeth Nutrition, through a donation to the FNIH.

This BCP will provide an unprecedented view of how a healthy human brain develops and works. The University of North Carolina and University of Minnesota are the recipients of the NIH grant for the BCP. The researchers will characterize human brain connectivity and map patterns of structural and functional connectivity to important behavioral skills from infancy to early childhood. Additional biological (e.g., genetic markers) and environmental measures (e.g., family demographics) will be collected and examined to provide a more comprehensive picture of the factors that affect brain development. Study data will be made available to the scientific community as it is measured. This knowledge will be tremendously useful in understanding function and how early interventions may shape our brain throughout our lifespan.

The BCP is one of several programs that build upon the NIH’s Human Connectome Project (HCP), an ambitious effort to map the neural pathways that underlie human brain function. The overarching purpose is to acquire and share data about the structural and functional connectivity of the human brain.

Goals

  • Provide a better understanding of how the brain develops from infancy through early childhood and the factors that contribute to healthy brain development.
  • Characterize human brain connectivity and map patterns of structural and functional connectivity to important behavioral skills from infancy to early childhood.
  • Share study data with the scientific community as they are measured.
  • Coordinate with other components of the Human Connectome Project.

Results & Accomplishments

Media

UNC Press Release (September 7, 2016): UNC and Minnesota Researchers Earn NIH Grant to Explore Infant Brain Development

Wyeth Nutrition Press Release (July 6, 2016):National Institutes of Health’s Baby Connectome Project Advances with Support from Wyeth Nutrition

Wyeth Nutrition Fact Sheet, July 6, 2016

Wyeth Nutrition Press Release (June 11,2015): The Foundation for the National Institutes of Health to Launch the Baby Connectome Project with Support from Wyeth Nutrition

Partners

National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Wyeth Nutrition

Contacts

Julie Wolf-Rodda, Director of Development, jwolf-rodda@fnih.org