New Imaging Dataset to Accelerate Research on Neurodevelopmental Disorders

The Ontario Brain Institute (OBI) continues to play a key role in open science and brain health research with the release of a new clinical dataset that will help scientists around the world advance investigation into pediatric neurological conditions.

One year ago, as part of its inaugural release, data from over 2,500 children and youth impacted by neurodevelopmental disorders such as attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder and autism spectrum disorder, were made open and available on Brain-CODE, OBI’s neuroinformatics and analytics platform.

The cleaned, standardized, and curated dataset included in-depth clinical phenotyping data such as demographic, medical history data, and behavioural and cognitive assessments from research conducted by a team at the Province of Ontario Neurodevelopmental Network (POND).

Today, OBI has released a new set of imaging modalities (T1 weighted and T2 weighted structural MRIs, DTI, MRS, resting and task-based fMRI, and MEG) from the POND study for a matching cohort of over 600 children and youth, some diagnosed with various neurodevelopmental disorders and others typically developing.

Neurodevelopmental disorders explored include:

  • Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
  • Tourette Syndrome
  • Fragile X Syndrome
  • Anxiety
  • 22q
  • Subthreshold-ADHD
  • ASD as a secondary diagnosis

“The Ontario Brain Institute’s approach to data sharing offers the research community an opportunity to take advantage of data to better understand brain disorders and identify new treatment options that might otherwise take years of work and resources,” said Dr. Tom Mikkelsen, President & Scientific Director of OBI. “This is the beauty of open data and team science, which allows scientists from across the globe to work together.”

“Through a research-driven strategy, the team at Province of Ontario Neurodevelopmental Network aims to develop targeted treatment interventions to improve long-term outcomes,” said Dr. Evdokia Anagnostou, Co-Director of POND. “For us, the future of brain health is clear: clean, curated data sets, such as the ones available on Brain-CODE, are catalysts for treatment options that can be developed quickly with a fraction of resources, allowing for the effective diagnosis and treatment of children impacted by neurodevelopmental disorders.”



  • The Ontario Brain Institute (OBI) is a provincially funded, not-for-profit organization that accelerates discovery and innovation, benefiting both patients and the economy. OBI’s state-of-the-art database, Brain-CODE, is designed to store, manage, and analyze the many different types of data collected by researchers around the province.

  • The Province of Ontario Neurodevelopmental Network (POND), one of six Integrated Discovery Programs carried out in partnership with OBI, aims to understand the biology underpinning neurodevelopmental disorders to improve diagnosis, care, and long-term outcomes for children.

  • Brain-CODE is OBI's state-of-the-art neuroinformatics platform where data streams from OBI's six research programs is assimilated, stored, and analyzed. OBI's Brain-CODE is a "shared brain" for researchers in Ontario and beyond.

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