South African neuroscientist, Henry Markram, is all set to build a digital working model of the human brain.
The project named "Blue Brain" has been granted a 12 billion South African rand grant from the European Union and is being created in a supercomputer at the Swiss Federal Institute for Technology in Lausanne, Switzerland.
The project is aimed at mapping all 100 billion neurons connected by 100,000 billion synapses of the human brain on a single computer system. According to Markram, this simulation would help to understand mental illness like Alzheimers, autism and dementia much better and develop more efficient treatment options.
In 2006, Markram has simulated nearly 10,000 virtual neurons. In 2011, Markram and his team simulated a virtual slice of brain containing 1 million neurons.