NIH Blueprint: The Human Connectome Project

News and Updates

Project News | July 24, 2014

NIH Funding Opportunity on Connectomes Related to Human Disease

nih-oer-logoNIH recently announced a funding opportunity PAR-14-281: Connectomes Related to Human Disease (U01) for projects that will:

“apply the Human Connectome data collection protocol to disease/disorder cohorts of interest to the Institutes and Centers that are participating in this FOA.”

The announcement indicates that projects are expected to emulate HCP preprocessing pipelines and to share imaging and behavioral data via the Connectome Coordination Facility to be established at Washington University.

For additional information relevant to meeting these conditions for data acquisition, processing, and sharing, please see HCP Disease-related Connectome FAQ.

Press Releases,Project News | June 9, 2014

HCP Announces Release of Data from 500 Subjects

The Human Connectome Project (HCP) WU-Minn consortium is pleased to announce the release of 500 Subjects of HCP image and behavioral data.

hcp-announce-500sWhat’s in the HCP 500 Subjects data release? The 500 Subjects release includes behavioral/demographic and 3T MR imaging data from 523 healthy adult participants collected in Q1-Q6. Structural scans are available for over 500 subjects. Over 440 subjects completed all of the four imaging modalities in the HCP protocol: structural images (T1w and T2w), resting-state fMRI (rfMRI), task fMRI (tfMRI), and high angular resolution diffusion imaging (dMRI). In addition to MR scans, 14 subjects were also scanned in resting-state MEG (rMEG) and task MEG (tMEG).

The 500 Subjects release also includes:

Significant updates for MR minimal preprocessing pipelines. Changes have been made to all of the HCP minimal preprocessing pipelines, including a switch to MSMSulc registration from FreeSurfer registration in structural MR pipeline, component analysis software updates (FSL 5.0.6, FreeSurfer 5.3.0-HCP, Connectome Workbench beta v0.85), output files in CIFTI-2.0 format, . An update to the CIFTI file format was released in March 2014 (see for details). All CIFTI files produced by the HCP pipelines are now in CIFTI-2.0 format.

Individual task fMRI analysis results available at various surface smoothing levels.  Individual (within-subject) grayordinates (surface)-based cross run level-2 tfMRI analysis results using FSL are now available at several levels of total smoothing: 2mm, 4mm, 8mm, and 12mm smoothed on the surface. 4mm volume-smoothed cross run tfMRI analysis results are also available.

Updates to MEG data and access in ConnectomeDB. Cortical sheet based anatomical source models are now available, MEG data have been integrated into the ConnectomeDB dashboard, and MR data is now available for all released MEG subjects.

Group-average functional MR data for two larger subject groups. Resting state functional connectivity MRI (fcMRI) correlation matrices (“dense” functional connectome files), in full correlation matrix and mean gray signal regressed versions are available for a group of 468 ‘related’ subjects (R468) with complete rfMRI data. Task functional MRI (tfMRI) contrasts are available using data processed with the updated processing pipelines for two groups: 100 unrelated (U100) subjects and 400+ ‘related’ subjects (R400+) that are a mixture of related and unrelated subjects.

Additional restricted behavioral and demographic data. Restricted data has been added for all subjects from alcohol and tobacco 7-day retrospective surveys; demographic, mental health, and substance use data from the semi-structured assessment for the genetics of alcoholism (SSAGA) interview; physical health and history measures; menstrual cycle information on female subjects; and family history of psychiatric illness.

Improvements to behavioral data organization and data dictionary. We have reorganized fields, renamed variables, and improved descriptions for behavioral and individual difference data to make navigation and filtering more intuitive in ConnectomeDB.

All imaging data soon to be available on the cloud through Amazon S3. HCP has partnered with Amazon Web Services Amazon Web Services (AWS) Public Data Sets program ( to offer storage and access to all HCP imaging data on Amazon S3 within weeks of the 500 Subjects Release.

Access 500 Subjects data on the HCP website. Explore, download, or order the HCP 500 Subjects dataset (~17TB of data!) via the ConnectomeDB database. Most HCP image and behavioral data is openly accessible to investigators worldwide who register and accept a limited set of Open Access Data Use Terms. Note: Please clear your browser cache before logging in to ConnectomeDB.

Want more information?  Check out the HCP 500 Subjects Release Reference Manual for a comprehensive guide that includes details on imaging protocols, behavioral measures, and information that will help users obtain and analyze the 500 Subjects data.

If you are actively using HCP data and tools, we encourage you to join and be active in the hcp-users discussion group (, so that you can tune in to technical discussions on issues that may be of interest.

Thanks again for your interest in the HCP.  Please send us your questions and comments anytime to

Posted by Jenn Elam @ 8:21 am

Project News | April 23, 2014

Important preparations for the upcoming 500 Subjects data release

We are pleased to announce that the HCP is preparing to release data on 500 Subjects in mid/late May 2014. Before the release, we wanted to make you aware of some important considerations:

  • All 500 Subjects MRI data are being processed with an updated version of the HCP pipelines (v3.1) incorporating several improvements, including a new surface-based alignment method that improves cross-subject registration (Robinson et al., in revision, see Robinson et al. 2013 for a preview)
  • 500 Subjects data will include MRI and behavioral data for subjects previously released in Q1-Q3, and in the MEG1 release, plus additional subjects collected in Q4-Q6

When the 500 Subjects data are released:

  • MRI data for all subjects in ConnectomeDB will reflect the switch to v3.1 processing
  • new orders of Connectome in a Box will include v3.1 processed MRI data

Due to the processing changes, we recommend that previously released Q1-Q3 MR data not be mixed in analyses with the 500 Subjects MR data (processed with the new v3.1 pipelines). Remember to be sure to keep track of version numbers when analyzing HCP data.

If you will need any of the Q1-Q3 v2.0 processed data that is currently available for download from ConnectomeDB, we suggest you download it before May 15, 2014.

All users of HCP behavioral data:

The HCP uses a behavioral battery which includes several measurements developed by the NIH Toolbox. Due to changes in how the NIH Toolbox calculates some of its scoring, scores for previously released Q1-Q3 HCP subjects will be updated accordingly as part of the upcoming HCP 500 Subjects release set for mid/late May 2014.

Specifically,  the measures that will have updated scoring are:

  • Oral Reading Recognition Test
  • Pattern Comparison Processing Speed Test
  • Picture Vocabulary Test
  • Motor 4-Meter Walk Gait Speed Test

Most of the changes modestly affect the normative scaled scoring for all subjects. Details on the changes to the scoring can be found here: NIH Toolbox Measure Updates

If you are currently using data from these measures in an analysis of Q1-Q3 subjects, be aware that the subject scoring for these measures in ConnectomeDB will be updated to reflect the changes. If you need the older version scoring data currently available from ConnectomeDB, make sure to download it before May 15, 2014.

Please let us know if you have any questions ( Join the hcp-users list here.

We hope you are looking forward to the release!


The WU-Minn HCP Consortium

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