Brief Communication

Automated whole-cell patch-clamp electrophysiology of neurons in vivo

  • Nature Methods volume 9, pages 585587 (2012)
  • doi:10.1038/nmeth.1993
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Abstract

Whole-cell patch-clamp electrophysiology of neurons is a gold-standard technique for high-fidelity analysis of the biophysical mechanisms of neural computation and pathology, but it requires great skill to perform. We have developed a robot that automatically performs patch clamping in vivo, algorithmically detecting cells by analyzing the temporal sequence of electrode impedance changes. We demonstrate good yield, throughput and quality of automated intracellular recording in mouse cortex and hippocampus.

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Acknowledgements

We would like to acknowledge electronic switch design by G. Holst at Georgia Tech. E.S.B. acknowledges funding by the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director′s New Innovator Award (DP2OD002002) and the NIH EUREKA Award program (1R01NS075421) and other NIH grants, the New York Stem Cell Foundation Robertson Neuroscience Award, the National Science Foundation (NSF) CAREER award (CBET 1053233) and other NSF grants, Jerry and Marge Burnett, Google, Human Frontiers Science Program, MIT McGovern Institute and McGovern Institute Neurotechnology Award Program, MIT Media Lab, NARSAD, Paul Allen Distinguished Investigator Award, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and Wallace H. Coulter Foundation. C.R.F. acknowledges funding by the NSF (CISE 1110947, EHR 0965945) as well as the American Heart Association (10GRNT4430029), Georgia Economic Development Association, Wallace H. Coulter Foundation, Center for Disease Control and NSF National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network (NNIN) and from the Georgia Tech Institute for BioEngineering and BioSciences Junior Faculty Award, Technology Fee Fund, Invention Studio and George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering.

Author information

Affiliations

  1. Media Lab, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA.

    • Suhasa B Kodandaramaiah
    • , Giovanni Talei Franzesi
    • , Brian Y Chow
    •  & Edward S Boyden
  2. George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Georgia, USA.

    • Suhasa B Kodandaramaiah
    •  & Craig R Forest
  3. McGovern Institute, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA.

    • Edward S Boyden

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Contributions

S.B.K., G.T.F., B.Y.C, E.S.B. and C.R.F. designed devices and experiments and wrote the paper. S.B.K. conducted experiments. G.T.F. assisted with experiments and autopatcher pilot testing.

Competing interests

The authors declare no competing financial interests.

Corresponding authors

Correspondence to Edward S Boyden or Craig R Forest.

Supplementary information

PDF files

  1. 1.

    Supplementary Text and Figures

    Supplementary Figures 1–7 , Supplementary Table 1 and Supplementary Notes 1–5

Zip files

  1. 1.

    Supplementary Software

    Autopatcher Labview software and user manual