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Neuroscience Information Framework

Dynamic inventory of Web-based neuroscience resources including data, materials, and tools to advance neuroscience research by enabling discovery and access to public research data and tools worldwide through an open source, networked environment. Resource providers may make their resources accessible through the NIF and offers a variety of methods for making resources searchable through the NIF. NIF has a comprehensive vocabulary for annotating and searching neuroscience resources. For more information or to recommend a resource, follow the link to Register Your Resource (, or send us an e-mail at curation (at) Collaborating institutions working on the current version of NIF include University of California, San Diego, California Institute of Technology, George Mason University, Yale University Medical College, and Washington University.


Resource ID: nif-0000-25673     Resource Type: Resource     Version: Latest Version


neuroscience, bioinformatics, data sharing, metadata standard, ontology, resource, registry, literature, grant, service, software, neuinfo, cerebral circulation, neuron, antibody diversity, neuroanatomy, atlas


Access: Open
Reuse: Open
Start date: 2008
Type: Disciplinary
Deposit: Accepting data for deposit
(info provided by

Listed By

FORCE11, OMICtools,


Except where otherwise noted, Creative Commons Attribution License, v3

Alternate IDs






Parent Organization



Funding Information

NIDA, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, NIH Blueprint for Neuroscience Research, HHSN27120080035C

Additional Resource Types

Software Development Tool, Systems Interoperability Software, Community Building Portal, Database, Data Repository


Resource Identification Portal

Alternate URLs

Original Submitter


Version Status


Submitted On

12:00am September 21, 2010

Originated From


Changes from Previous Version

  • Description was changed
  • Additional Resource Types was changed

Version 2

Created 2 months ago by Christie Wang

Version 1

Created 5 years ago by Anonymous

The neuroscience information framework: a data and knowledge environment for neuroscience.

  • Gardner D
  • Neuroinformatics
  • 2008 12

With support from the Institutes and Centers forming the NIH Blueprint for Neuroscience Research, we have designed and implemented a new initiative for integrating access to and use of Web-based neuroscience resources: the Neuroscience Information Framework. The Framework arises from the expressed need of the neuroscience community for neuroinformatic tools and resources to aid scientific inquiry, builds upon prior development of neuroinformatics by the Human Brain Project and others, and directly derives from the Society for Neuroscience's Neuroscience Database Gateway. Partnered with the Society, its Neuroinformatics Committee, and volunteer consultant-collaborators, our multi-site consortium has developed: (1) a comprehensive, dynamic, inventory of Web-accessible neuroscience resources, (2) an extended and integrated terminology describing resources and contents, and (3) a framework accepting and aiding concept-based queries. Evolving instantiations of the Framework may be viewed at , , and other sites as they come on line.

A hybrid human and machine resource curation pipeline for the Neuroscience Information Framework.

  • Bandrowski AE
  • Database (Oxford)
  • 2012 21

The breadth of information resources available to researchers on the Internet continues to expand, particularly in light of recently implemented data-sharing policies required by funding agencies. However, the nature of dense, multifaceted neuroscience data and the design of contemporary search engine systems makes efficient, reliable and relevant discovery of such information a significant challenge. This challenge is specifically pertinent for online databases, whose dynamic content is 'hidden' from search engines. The Neuroscience Information Framework (NIF; was funded by the NIH Blueprint for Neuroscience Research to address the problem of finding and utilizing neuroscience-relevant resources such as software tools, data sets, experimental animals and antibodies across the Internet. From the outset, NIF sought to provide an accounting of available resources, whereas developing technical solutions to finding, accessing and utilizing them. The curators therefore, are tasked with identifying and registering resources, examining data, writing configuration files to index and display data and keeping the contents current. In the initial phases of the project, all aspects of the registration and curation processes were manual. However, as the number of resources grew, manual curation became impractical. This report describes our experiences and successes with developing automated resource discovery and semiautomated type characterization with text-mining scripts that facilitate curation team efforts to discover, integrate and display new content. We also describe the DISCO framework, a suite of automated web services that significantly reduce manual curation efforts to periodically check for resource updates. Lastly, we discuss DOMEO, a semi-automated annotation tool that improves the discovery and curation of resources that are not necessarily website-based (i.e. reagents, software tools). Although the ultimate goal of automation was to reduce the workload of the curators, it has resulted in valuable analytic by-products that address accessibility, use and citation of resources that can now be shared with resource owners and the larger scientific community. DATABASE URL: