Journal article

Coupling of organotypic brain slice cultures to silicon-based arrays of electrodes

Fetal or early postnatal brain tissue can be cultured in viable and healthy condition for several weeks with development and preservation of the basic cellular and connective organization as so-called organotypic brain slice cultures. Here we demonstrate and describe how it is possible to establish such hippocampal rat brain slice cultures on biocompatible silicon-based chips with arrays of electrodes with a histological organization comparable to that of conventional brain slice cultures grown by the roller drum technique and on semiporous membranes. Intracellular and extracellular recordings from neurons in the slice cultures show that the electroresponsive properties of the neurons and synaptic circuitry are in accordance with those described for cells in acutely prepared dices of the adult rat hippocampus. Based on the recordings and the possibilities of stimulating the cultured cells through the electrode arrays it is anticipated that the setup eventually will allow long-term studies of defined neuronal networks and provide valuable information on both normal and neurotoxicological and neuropathological conditions.


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