The Centre for Brain Research was established as an autonomous, non-profit research organization in the Indian Institute of Science under the Karnataka Societies Registration Act of 1960, with the generous gift from Mr. Kris Gopalakrishnan (co-founder of Infosys Limited) and Mrs. Sudha Gopalakrishnan. CBR is funded by philanthropy and receives research grants for specific projects from several granting agencies.  Mr. Kris Gopalakrishnan has also provided funds for the construction of the state-of-art building for use by CBR within IISc campus.  The philanthropic gift by Mr. Gopalakrishnan is the largest support provided by an individual for scientific research in the history of India. This is a unique initiative in the current research environment in India that will help in conducting cutting edge research on aging brain and age-associated brain disorders.

Enormous progress has been made worldwide in the last 3 decades in understanding human brain function due to the increase in numbers of researchers and also unprecedented technical innovations that have occurred. Most notable are the developments in molecular biology and brain imaging. These advanced tools have provided new windows into brain functioning, resulting in neuroscience becoming one of the most rapidly developing scientific fields. Further, acknowledging the tremendous disease burden caused by brain disorders and the paucity of treatments, several large scale efforts have been launched in both North America and Europe. These efforts have emphasized an integrative approach to understanding brain function using tools from molecular genetics to imaging and bringing together large groups with diverse expertise to address the complex challenges required to understand brain functioning. At CBR, we develop and foster large scale focussed research programmes and build capacity for inter-disciplinary neuroscience research in the country that would set the stage for Indian scientists to contribute in a significant manner to the endeavour of understanding the human brain and discovering rational therapies and cures for disorders of the aging brain.

The mandate of CBR is to carry out basic research to understand brain functioning in health and disease. CBR aims to foster focused research programme for inter-disciplinary neuroscience research with primary goal to discover rational therapies for dementia and other age-related brain disorders. CBR has initiated comprehensive, long-term longitudinal study of cognition, genetics and brain imaging in ageing population that include patients and healthy individuals.  The uniqueness of the Indian population provides an ideal basis for carrying out such studies to identify potential protective and risk factors. CBR has developed comprehensive data management system, which potentially permits the participation of the larger scientific community in data analysis especially of the imaging data.  CBR will provide a common platform to network with neuroscientists from various institutions across the country with research focus on neurodegenerative disorders.

Kris Gopalakrishnan, “The human brain is one of the world’s biggest mysteries, which is yet to be fully understood by man. By funding and creating this Centre with IISc, we are working towards creating a globally recognized, world-class research facility that will be at the cutting-edge of research on the human brain.”