Automatic discovery of cell types and microcircuitry from neural connectomics

Eric Jonas, Konrad Kording

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Neural connectomics has begun producing massive amounts of data, necessitating new analysis methods to discover the biological and computational structure. It has long been assumed that discovering neuron types and their relation to microcircuitry is crucial to understanding neural function. Here we developed a non-parametric Bayesian technique that identifies neuron types and microcircuitry patterns in connectomics data. It combines the information traditionally used by biologists in a principled and probabilistically coherent manner, including connectivity, cell body location, and the spatial distribution of synapses. We show that the approach recovers known neuron types in the retina and enables predictions of connectivity, better than simpler algorithms. It also can reveal interesting structure in the nervous system of Caenorhabditis elegans and an old man-made microprocessor. Our approach extracts structural meaning from connectomics, enabling new approaches of automatically deriving anatomical insights from these emerging datasets.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere04250
Pages (from-to)e04250
StatePublished - Apr 30 2015


  • C. elegans
  • computation
  • connectomics
  • microcircuitry
  • mouse
  • neuroscience

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Automatic discovery of cell types and microcircuitry from neural connectomics'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this