Massive Data Management and Sharing Module for Connectome Reconstruction

Brain Sci. 2020 May 22;10(5):314. doi: 10.3390/brainsci10050314.


Recently, with the rapid development of electron microscopy (EM) technology and the increasing demand of neuron circuit reconstruction, the scale of reconstruction data grows significantly. This brings many challenges, one of which is how to effectively manage large-scale data so that researchers can mine valuable information. For this purpose, we developed a data management module equipped with two parts, a storage and retrieval module on the server-side and an image cache module on the client-side. On the server-side, Hadoop and HBase are introduced to resolve massive data storage and retrieval. The pyramid model is adopted to store electron microscope images, which represent multiresolution data of the image. A block storage method is proposed to store volume segmentation results. We design a spatial location-based retrieval method for fast obtaining images and segments by layers rapidly, which achieves a constant time complexity. On the client-side, a three-level image cache module is designed to reduce latency when acquiring data. Through theoretical analysis and practical tests, our tool shows excellent real-time performance when handling large-scale data. Additionally, the server-side can be used as a backend of other similar software or a public database to manage shared datasets, showing strong scalability.

Keywords: connectome; distributed storage and retrieval; electron microscope image; image cache; massive data management; segmentation result.