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Allen Brain Atlas API

The primary data of the Allen Mouse Brain Connectivity Atlas consists of high-resolution images of axonal projections targeting different anatomic regions or various cell types using Cre-dependent specimens. Each data set is processed through an informatics data analysis pipeline to obtain spatially mapped quantified projection information.


Labeled axons are visualized using serial two-photon tomography. A typical SectionDataSet consists of 140 coronal images at 100 µm sampling density. Each image has 0.35 µm pixel resolution and raw data is in 16-bit per channel format. Background fluorescence in the red channel illustrates basic anatomy and structures of the brain, and the injection site and projections are shown in the green channel. No data was collected in the blue channel.

From the API, detailed information about SectionDataSets, SectionImages, Injections and TransgenicLines can be obtained using RMA queries.



3-D annotation volumes were updated in the June 2013 release to reflect changes in the atlas drawings and ontology. Also note that the volumes are now in a 32-bit format to accommodate large structure identifiers.


For each dataset, the gridding module creates a low resolution 3-D summary of the labeled axonal trajectories and resamples the data to the common coordinate space of the 3-D reference model. Casting all data into a canonical space allows for easy cross-comparison between datasets. The projection data grids can also be viewed directly as 3-D volumes or used for analysis (i.e. afferent target, spatial and correlative searches).