An architecture for GRID-based analysis of Neuroimaging data using relational databases and the SWIFT workflow engine.


Neuroimaging research imposes substantial demands on computational infrastructures. These infrastructures need to support management of massive amounts of data while affording rapid analysis, easy access to highly specific subsets of data, and secure remote access for collaborators. We have recently described an architecture to achieve these goals, which relies on distributed database management systems [1]. A central component of this system relies on DBMSs to store neuroimaging data and metadata in a relational database. This allows for extraction of highly specific subsets of data via SQL queries, which can be readily analyzed via GRID accessible computing nodes. Here we present two recent upgrades to this system: (a) an extension of the architecture to use the SWIFT workflow specification system [2] to facilitate analysis of DBMS-stored neuroimaging data on GRID sites (e.g., TeraGrid), and (b) an interface between this system and several commonly used neuroimaging tools (AFNI, SUMA) that allows for immediate graphic depiction of the results of database queries.

In Neuroinformatics 2008