High-yield electrophysiological extracellular recording in freely moving rodents provides a unique window into the temporal dynamics of neural circuits. Recording from unrestrained animals is critical to investigate brain activity during natural behaviors. The use and implantation of high-channel-count silicon probes represent the largest cost and experimental complexity associated with such recordings making a recoverable and reusable system desirable. To address this, we have designed and tested a novel 3D printed head-gear system for freely moving mice and rats. The system consists of a recoverable microdrive printed in stainless steel and a plastic head cap system, allowing researchers to reuse the silicon probes with ease, decreasing the effective cost, and the experimental effort and complexity. The cap designs are modular and provide structural protection and electrical shielding to the implanted hardware and electronics. We provide detailed procedural instructions allowing researchers to adapt and flexibly modify the head-gear system.
All documentations for parts and device fabrication are included in the manuscript and supporting files, including video recordings. The same information is made public via GitHub (https://github.com/buzsakilab/3d_print_designs/tree/master/Microdrives/Metal_recoverable). Data from example electrophysiological recordings are available here (https://buzsakilab.com/wp/projects/entry/65723/).
- György Buzsáki
- György Buzsáki
- György Buzsáki
- Peter C Petersen
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
Animal experimentation: All experiments were approved by the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee at New York University Medical Center (protocol number: IA15-01466).
- Laura L Colgin, University of Texas at Austin, United States
© 2021, Vöröslakos et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
Over the last few years, there has been growing interest in measuring the contractile force (CF) of engineered muscle tissues to evaluate their functionality. However, there are still no standards available for selecting the most suitable experimental platform, measuring system, culture protocol, or stimulation patterns. Consequently, the high variability of published data hinders any comparison between different studies. We have identified that cantilever deflection, post deflection, and force transducers are the most commonly used configurations for CF assessment in 2D and 3D models. Additionally, we have discussed the most relevant emerging technologies that would greatly complement CF evaluation with intracellular and localized analysis. This review provides a comprehensive analysis of the most significant advances in CF evaluation and its critical parameters. In order to compare contractile performance across experimental platforms, we have used the specific force (sF, kN/m2), CF normalized to the calculated cross-sectional area (CSA). However, this parameter presents a high variability throughout the different studies, which indicates the need to identify additional parameters and complementary analysis suitable for proper comparison. We propose that future contractility studies in skeletal muscle constructs report detailed information about construct size, contractile area, maturity level, sarcomere length, and, ideally, the tetanus-to-twitch ratio. These studies will hopefully shed light on the relative impact of these variables on muscle force performance of engineered muscle constructs. Prospective advances in muscle tissue engineering, particularly in muscle disease models, will require a joint effort to develop standardized methodologies for assessing CF of engineered muscle tissues.
Two epigenetic pathways of transcriptional repression, DNA methylation and Polycomb repressive complex 2 (PRC2) are known to regulate neuronal development and function. However, their respective contributions to brain maturation are unknown. We found that conditional loss of the de novo DNA methyltransferase Dnmt3a in mouse excitatory neurons altered expression of synapse-related genes, stunted synapse maturation, and impaired working memory and social interest. At the genomic level, loss of Dnmt3a abolished postnatal accumulation of CG and non-CG DNA methylation, leaving adult neurons with an unmethylated, fetal-like epigenomic pattern at ~222,000 genomic regions. The PRC2-associated histone modification, H3K27me3, increased at many of these sites. Our data support a dynamic interaction between two fundamental modes of epigenetic repression during postnatal maturation of excitatory neurons, which together confer robustness on neuronal regulation.