Developmental Mouse Brain Common Coordinate Framework

bioRxiv (2023)


3D standard reference brains serve as key resources to understand the spatial organization of the brain and promote interoperability across different studies. However, unlike the adult mouse brain, the lack of standard 3D reference atlases for developing mouse brains has hindered advancement of our understanding of brain development. Here, we present a multimodal 3D developmental common coordinate framework (DevCCF) spanning mouse embryonic day (E) 11.5, E13.5, E15.5, E18.5, and postnatal day (P) 4, P14, and P56 with anatomical segmentations defined by a developmental ontology. At each age, the DevCCF features undistorted morphologically averaged atlas templates created from Magnetic Resonance Imaging and co-registered high-resolution templates from light sheet fluorescence microscopy. Expert-curated 3D anatomical segmentations at each age adhere to an updated prosomeric model and can be explored via an interactive 3D web-visualizer. As a use case, we employed the DevCCF to unveil the emergence of GABAergic neurons in embryonic brains. Moreover, we integrated the Allen CCFv3 into the P56 template with stereotaxic coordinates and mapped spatial transcriptome cell-type data with the developmental ontology. In summary, the DevCCF is an openly accessible resource that can be used for large-scale data integration to gain a comprehensive understanding of brain development.