Research relating in vivo brain function to behavior and brain disorders constitutes a major component of Penn’s overall neuroscience research portfolio in basic and clinical neuroscience, and builds on a rich Penn tradition dating to the 1940’s. It is also an inherently multidisciplinary research area that draws upon a breadth of expertise and resources distributed in numerous Departments and Schools.

The interdisciplinary Brain Science Center was created to enhance the environment on the Penn Campus brain research including human cognition, perception, affect, disordered cognition, and extension to preclinical models. The overall goal of the Brain Science Center is to consolidate expertise from the Center for Cognitive Neuroscience, Center for Functional Neuroimaging, and other labs and center supporting Brain Science methods and create services that facilitate state-of-the-art research using a largely shared set of methods and tools for elucidating brain-behavior relationships in health and disease.

The Brain Science Service Center provides a mechanism to support brain science infrastructure through user fees and will support expertise and resources in experimental design, data acquisition, and data analysis across in vivo brain research modalities. While a main focus will be on infrastructure to support in vivo studies in humans, related studies in preclinical models are supported as a bridge to investigations at cellular and circuit levels. This infrastructure-based mission is envisioned as largely orthogonal to and synergistic with the conceptual, educational, and outreach mission of the SAS MindCORE initiative.

The Brain Science Center is part of the Penn Mahoney Institute for Neurosciences and receives support from Office of the Vice Provost for Research.

The Penn Brain Science Center is housed in the Richards and Goddard Laboratories Complex, which was designated a National Historic Landmark in 2009. View the YouTube video for more information!

Affiliated Centers

Brain Behavior Laboratory This laboratory employs state-of-the-art electrophysiological methods to study brain function in healthy individuals and those with neuropsychiatric illnesses. Electrophysiology allows us to monitor the millisecond by millisecond changes in neural activity, using sophisticated time-frequency and evoked potential component analyses. Experimental paradigms probe multiple sensory modalities, with a special emphasis on the olfactory system as a model for developmental abnormalities associated with schizophrenia. Electrophysiological measures are integrated with measures derived from structural and functional neuroimaging and genetics to provide a comprehensive picture of brain integrity and dysfunction.
Penn Image Computing & Science Lab A central factor in the success and increasingly wide-spread application of imaging-based approaches in medicine has been the emergence of sophisticated mathematical and computational methods for extracting, analyzing and integrating clinically significant and scientifically important information from image data. The Penn Image Computing and Science Laboratory is at the forefront of research and education in all of the quantitative methods represented, including: segmentation, registration, morphometry and shape analysis, with numerous interdisciplinary collaborations spanning a variety of organ systems and all of the major and emerging modalities in biological/biomaterials imaging and in vivo medical imaging.
Center for Neuromodulation in Depression and Stress  Since founded in 2013, CNDS consistently capitalizes on and augments the efforts of the outstanding neuroscience community at the University of Pennsylvania by facilitating collaboration within and across various specialties. Through these connections, and the generosity of our funding agencies, we are able to spur new research on the science and treatment of affective disorders.
Penn Frontotemporal Degeneration Center The Penn Frontotemporal Degeneration Center brings together an energetic team of creative clinicians and researchers dedicated to the investigation and treatment of early onset neurodegenerative conditions.   Our Center members include neurologists, neuropathologists, neuroscientists, geneticists, genetic counselors, neuropsychologists, nurses, social workers, and clinical research coordinators, all targeting a cure for Frontotemporal degeneration .
Penn Institute for Biomedical Informatics The Institute for Biomedical Informatics (IBI) at the Perelman School of Medicine of the University of Pennsylvania. Their mission is to provide an interdisciplinary home for faculty, staff and students interested in bioinformatics, clinical informatics, clinical research informatics, consumer health informatics, and public health informatics. It is our goal to improve healthcare and fundamental knowledge of biological systems by creating an informatics ecosystem through cutting-edge educational programs, computational infrastructure, and collaborative research.
Center for Neuroscience & Society The Center for Neuroscience & Society are a group of faculty and students from departments spanning the Schools of Arts and Sciences, Business (Wharton), Communication (Annenberg), Engineering and Applied Science, Medicine (Perelman SOM) and Law at the University of Pennsylvania. Our group formed in 2004 as the Penn Neuroethics Program, with the goal of understanding the ethical, legal and social implications of neuroscience, and in 2009 became the Center for Neuroscience & Society.
Computational Neuroscience Initiative The Computational Neuroscience Initiative (CNI) of the University of Pennsylvania is a research and training program that draws together Penn’s scientists across the Life Sciences, Physical Sciences, and Engineering to spearhead the development and use of inter-disciplinary, quantitative approaches to the study of the brain and the mind.
Center for Biomedical Image Computing & Analytics The Center for Biomedical Image Computing and Analytics (CBICA) was established in 2013, and focuses on the development and application of advanced computational and analytical techniques that quantify morphology and function from biomedical images, as well as on relating imaging phenotypes to genetic and molecular characterizations, and finally on integrating this information into diagnostic and predictive tools in an era of personalized medicine. As Imaging has entered its information era, there has been an increased need to understand and quantify the complex information conveyed by biomedical images. Computational methods offer the potential for extracting diverse and complex information from imaging data, for precisely quantifying it and therefore overcoming limitations of subjective visual interpretation, and for finding imaging patterns that relate to pathologies.
Kording Lab A group of data scientists with interest in brains and, more general, biomedical research. Right at the moment, much of the research in the lab is about deep learning and its applications. However, we are now very much interested in causality and its links with machine learning.
Platt Lab The Platt Labs are known for asking some of the most challenging questions in 21st century neuroscience—and developing innovative ways to find the answers.
Penn Center for Neuroaesthetics The aim of neuroaesthetics is to understand neural systems that underlie aesthetic experiences and choices. This includes investigating the nature and neural basis of beauty, art, design, and architecture.