Neural probe combining microelectrodes and a droplet-based microdialysis collection system for high temporal resolution sampling
We propose a novel neural probe which combines microfluidic channels with recording and stimulation electrodes. The developed microfabrication approach enables the concentration of every active element such as electrodes and the sampling inlet in close proximity on the same surface. As a first approach, full functional validation is presented in this work (in vivo testing will be presented in the next study). Electrical characterization by impedance spectroscopy is performed in order to assess the electrode properties. An advanced experimental setup enabling the validation of the fluidic functions of the neural probe is also presented. It allowed the achievement of a high temporal resolution (170 ms) during sampling as a result of the integration of a T-junction droplet generator inside the probe. The droplets reached a volume of 0.84 nL and are separated by a non-aqueous phase (perfluoromethyldecalin, PFD). This probe represents an innovative tool for neuroscientists as it can be implanted in precise brain structures while combining electrical stimulation with sampling at a high temporal resolution.