The aim of this proposal is to establish an Integrated Neuroinformatics Resource on Alcoholism (INRA) as the informatics core component of the Integrative Neuroscience Initiative on Alcoholism Consortium (INIA). The overall goal of the INRA will be to create an integrated, multiresolution repository of neuroscience data, ranging from molecules to behavior for collaborative research on alcoholism. As the neuroinformatics core of the INIAC, the INRA will enable the integration of all data generated by all components of the INIAC. Furthermore, it will support synthesis of new knowledge through computational neurobiology tools for exploratory analysis including visualization, data mining and simulation. The INRA will represent a synthesis of emerging approaches in bioinformatics and existing methods of neuroinformatics to provide the INIAC a versatile toolbox of computational methods for elucidating the effects of alcohol on the nervous system.
The specific aims of the INRA will be: (i) implementation of an informatics infrastructure for integrating complex neuroscience data, from molecules to behavior, generated by the consortium and relevant data available in the public domain; (ii) development of an integrated secure web-based environment so that consortium members can interactively visualize, search and update the integrated neuroscience knowledge; and (iii) development of data mining tools, including biomolecular sequence analysis, gene expression array analysis, characterization of Biochemical pathways, and natural language processing to support hypothesis generation and testing regarding ethanol Consumption and neuroadaptation to alcohol. We will also collaborate with related neuroscience projects to utilize existing resources for brain atlases, neuronal circuits and neuronal properties. The INRA will The made available to the INIAC through a Neb-based system through interactive graphical user interfaces that will seamlessly integrate tools for data entry, modification, search, retrieval and mining. The core of the INRA will be based on robust knowledge management methods and tools that will Effectively integrate disparate forms of neuroscience data and make it amenable to complex inferences. Our proposed strategy ensures that the informatics resource is: (i) flexible and scalable to address the evolving needs of the INIAC, and (ii) highly intuitive and user-friendly to ensure optimal utilization by the INIAC members. The proposed INRA is a novel system for Collaborative research in neuroscience and alcoholism which will be developed by an interdisciplinary team of experts in Bioinformatics, computational biology, neuroscience and alcoholism research. We believe the INRA will greatly enhance the Dace of discovery in the area of ethanol consumption and neuroadaptation to alcohol within the INIAC as well as the general research community.
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