Spatially expandable fiber-based probes as a multifunctional deep brain interface
Patel, Dipan C.
Mills, William A., II
Kimbrough, Ian F.
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Understanding the cytoarchitecture and wiring of the brain requires improved methods to record and stimulate large groups of neurons with cellular specificity. This requires miniaturized neural interfaces that integrate into brain tissue without altering its properties. Existing neural interface technologies have been shown to provide high-resolution electrophysiological recording with high signal-to-noise ratio. However, with single implantation, the physical properties of these devices limit their access to one, small brain region. To overcome this limitation, we developed a platform that provides three-dimensional coverage of brain tissue through multisite multifunctional fiber-based neural probes guided in a helical scaffold. Chronic recordings from the spatially expandable fiber probes demonstrate the ability of these fiber probes capturing brain activities with a single-unit resolution for long observation times. Furthermore, using Thy1-ChR2-YFP mice we demonstrate the application of our probes in simultaneous recording and optical/chemical modulation of brain activities across distant regions. Similarly, varying electrographic brain activities from different brain regions were detected by our customizable probes in a mouse model of epilepsy, suggesting the potential of using these probes for the investigation of brain disorders such as epilepsy. Ultimately, this technique enables three-dimensional manipulation and mapping of brain activities across distant regions in the deep brain with minimal tissue damage, which can bring new insights for deciphering complex brain functions and dynamics in the near future.