A Wireless, Bidirectional Interface for In Vivo Recording and Stimulation of Neural Activity in Freely Behaving Rats

Liana Melo-Thomas, K.-Alexander Engelhardt, Uwe Thomas, Dirk Hoehl, Sascha Thomas, Markus Wöhr, Bjoern Werner, Frank Bremmer, Rainer K.W. Schwarting

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review


In vivo electrophysiology is a powerful technique to investigate the relationship between brain activity and behavior at a millisecond and micrometer scale. However, current methods mostly rely on tethered cable recordings or only use unidirectional systems, allowing either recording or stimulation of neural activity, but not at the same time or same target. Here, a new wireless, bidirectional device for simultaneous multichannel recording and stimulation of neural activity in freely behaving rats is described. The system operates through a single portable head stage that both transmits recorded activity and can be targeted in real-time for brain stimulation using a telemetry-based multichannel software. The head stage is equipped with a preamplifier and a rechargeable battery, allowing stable long-term recordings or stimulation for up to 1 h. Importantly, the head stage is compact, weighs 12 g (including battery) and thus has minimal impact on the animal´s behavioral repertoire, making the method applicable to a broad set of behavioral tasks. Moreover, the method has the major advantage that the effect of brain stimulation on neural activity and behavior can be measured simultaneously, providing a tool to assess the causal relationships between specific brain activation patterns and behavior. This feature makes the method particularly valuable for the field of deep brain stimulation, allowing precise assessment, monitoring, and adjustment of stimulation parameters during long-term behavioral experiments. The applicability of the system has been validated using the inferior colliculus as a model structure.

TidsskriftJournal of Visualized Experiments
Udgave nummer129
StatusUdgivet - 7. nov. 2017
Udgivet eksterntJa

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