USC recently opened the USC Stevens Hall for Neuroimaging, the new home for the Mark and Mary Stevens Neuroimaging and Informatics Institute. The sleek, modern, state-of-the-art research building is located on the southern edge of USC's Health Sciences Campus and will help accelerate research on neurological disorders such as autism and Alzheimer’s Disease.
According to USC News, Stevens Hall will facilitate cutting-edge research through new world-class features such as:
- The largest brain data repository in the world, currently holding about 3 petabytes of information from every continent except Antarctica.
- A Siemens 3T Prisma MRI machine, with the world’s first and only Siemens 7T MRI coming early next year.
- The Data Immersive Visualization Environment presentation theater, where researchers can project massive data sets and magnified images on a 12-by-15-foot screen with 1.5 mm pixel display in ultrahigh-definition 4K resolution.
- An on-site, high-performance computing cluster with 4,096 processor cores.
The new research facility was designed in part by Arthur Toga, the director of the USC Stevens Neuroimaging and Informatics Institute. “I designed every facet of USC Stevens Hall bearing in mind the challenges we face in neuroimaging and the tools my team needs to overcome those challenges,” Toga said. “Through the generosity of Mark and Mary Stevens, we have the ideal environment to enable our research, and you can expect the institute to chip away even faster at the perplexing neurological issues plaguing us today.”
Dr. Toga is an acclaimed figure for his advances in brain imaging research. Along with his fellow USC Professor Paul Thompson, Toga developed advanced algorithms and scientific approaches in neuroimaging that have greatly increased our understanding of the brain's geography.
“The research from Dr. Toga and his colleagues at the USC Stevens Neuroimaging and Informatics Institute is exactly the type of forward-thinking, translational research that will drive the Keck School of Medicine’s success,” said Rohit Varma, dean of the Keck School of Medicine of USC. “I am looking forward to the transformative science that will be conducted in this building in the coming years.”
The USC Stevens Neuroimaging and Informatics Institute is part of the Keck School of Medicine and includes research groups and centers such as:
- The Laboratory of Neuro Imaging, which is a research enterprise that includes faculty, staff, and students with expertise in mathematics, physics, computer science and neuroscience. The lab is focused on creating brain maps that can be used to compare data from multiple studies and can serve as a database of information for neuroscientists around the world.
- The Imaging Genetics Center, which is a multidisciplinary team of researchers that studies the link between genetics and neuroimaging. The team has included over 1,000 world-wide collaborators and has made major advances and discoveries in brain disorders and diseases.
- The Center for Image Acquisition, which refers to the new building's MRI facility.
Through the efforts of these teams within the new research center, USC continues to advance innovations in biotechnology and improve our understanding of autism, Alzheimer’s, and other neurologic disorders.
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