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BigBrain Project

Reference brains are indispensable tools in brain mapping, enabling integration of multimodal data into anatomically realistic standard space. However available reference brains are limited to macroscopic scale and therefore do not provide information on functionally relevant microscopic dimension. Within the scope of international cooperation with Prof. Alan Evans from Montreal Neurological Institute (MNI) of the McGill University in Montreal a 3D modell of a human brain in extremely high resolution has been developed. This so far unique reconstruction was carried on the basis of 7404 digitalized histological cuts. „BigBrain“ is a free tool and offers matchless neuroanatomical insight as well as the possibility to verify hypotheses.

The Human Brain Project (HBP) integrates Big Brain as a part of the HBP Human Brain Atlas, and provides an interactive Online-Viewer at The dataset of approx. 1 Terabyte is available for download at



For detailed information please see the original publication.

Amunts, K., Lepage, C., Borgeat, L., Mohlberg, H., Dickscheid, T., Rousseau, M., Bludau, S., Bazin, P., Lewis, L., Oros-Peusquens, A., Shah, N., Lippert, T., Zilles, K., Evans, A., 2013. BigBrain - an ultra-high resolution 3D human brain model. Science Vol. 340 no. 6139 pp. 1472-1475

Additional Information

BigBrain Project

Big Brain


Prof. Dr. med. Katrin Amunts

Building: 15.9, Room: 3022

Tel.:  +49-2461-61-4300
Fax: +49-2461-61-3483


C. and O. Vogt-Intitut for Brain Research
University Hospital Düsseldorf
Moorenstraße 5
40225 Düsseldorf

Buidling: 22.03, Floor: 05, Room: 39

Tel.:  +49-211-81-12777
Fax: +49-211-81-12336

Alan C. Evans, Ph.D

McConnell Brain Imaging Center (BIC)
Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital (MNIH)
McGill University

3801 University, WB208,
Montreal, QC.
Canada, H3A 2B4