Neuroscience Information Framework
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The Neuroscience Information Framework is a repertory of global neuroscience web resources, including experimental, clinical, and translational neuroscience databases, knowledge bases, atlases, and genetic/genomic resources.
Development of the NIF started in 2008, when the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine obtained an NIH contract to create and maintain "a dynamic inventory of web-based neurosciences data, resources, and tools that scientists and students can access via any computer connected to the Internet". The project is headed by Maryann Martone, co-director of the National Center for Microscopy and Imaging Research (NCMIR), part of the multi-disciplinary Center for Research in Biological Systems (CRBS), headquartered at UC San Diego. Together with co-principal investigators Jeffrey S. Grethe and Amarnath Gupta, Martone will lead a national collaboration that includes researchers at Yale University, the California Institute of Technology, George Mason University, and Washington University.
Unlike general search engines, NIF provides deeper access to a more focused set of resources that are relevant to neuroscience, search strategies tailored to neuroscience, and access to content that is traditionally “hidden” from web search engines. The NIF is a dynamic inventory of neuroscience databases, annotated and integrated with a unified system of biomedical terminology] (i.e. NeuroLex). NIF supports concept-based queries across multiple scales of biological structure and multiple levels of biological function, making it easier to search for and understand the results. NIF will also provide a registry through which resources providers can disclose availability of resources relevant to neuroscience research. NIF is not intended to be a warehouse or repository itself, but a means for disclosing and locating resources elsewhere available via the web.
Listed resources include databases, software tools, experimental reagents and tools, knowledge bases and portals, and other entities identified by the neuroscience research community. Although NIF continues to be developed, the latest version can be accessed at www.neuinfo.org. NIH has released several program announcements that encourage resource providers to register their resource with NIF.
NIF was featured in the volume 6 number 3 issue in the journal Neuroinformatics in September 2008:
More information on related publications can be found on the NIF publications page.
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