Swiss university launches Human Brain Project

Oct 07, 2013, 10:24 AM EDT
AFP/ Getty/Mauricio Lima

GENEVA (AP) — A Swiss university has launched what it calls the world's most ambitious neuroscience project with a budget of 1.2 billion euros ($1.6 billion).

The Human Brain Project, co-funded by the European Union, plans to use supercomputers to model the brain and then simulate drugs and treatments for diseases that cost hundreds of billions of euros annually in Europe alone.

The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne on Monday held initial meetings with scientists from 135 partner institutions, aiming over the next 30 months to set up and test platforms that from 2016 will be used for the simulations and computations.

The U.S. National Institutes of Health in May also announced an attempt to map the brain, while German scientists announced in June they had created a digital brain model.