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The Neuroscience Information Framework (NIF) is a dynamic inventory of web-based neurosciences data, resources, and tools. It is an initiative of the NIH Blueprint for Neuroscience Research.
The network has established the neuroscience lexicon known as the NeuroLex The NeuroLex is being constructed to help improve the way that neuroscientists communicate about their data, so that information systems like the NIF can find data more easily and provide more powerful means of integrating data that occur across distributed resources. One of the big roadblocks to data integration in neuroscience is the inconsistent use of terminology in databases and other resources like the literature. When we use the same terms to mean different things, we cannot easily ask questions that span across multiple resources. For example, if three databases have information about what genes are expressed in cortex, but they all use different definitions of cerebral cortex, then we cannot compare them easily.