Traditional neurotechnologies limit brain mapping to either fine detail but in very few neurons at a time (microscale), or in large regions but without the detail of their individual neurons (macroscale).
To truly understand how the brain functions, we need technologies that can map neural circuit activity at the mesoscale, i.e in thousands of individual neurons simultaneously during a cognitive or behavioral task. Enter Inscopix.
The innovation at the core of the Inscopix brain-mapping platform is the integration and miniaturization of the bulky bench-top fluorescence microscope (Left) into a 2 gm device (Right), smaller than a fingertip, that can be mounted onto the skull of a living animal subject to observe its brain activity.
When a neuron is activated, calcium levels increase inside the cell. GCaMP6 binds to the calcium and reports the event by producing a transient fluorescent signal. The miniature microscope captures the changes in brain cell fluorescence and transmits high-resolution images through a flexible cable and data acquisition (DAQ) box, which can be accessed remotely to control the acquisition and stream the data live (see below).
Imaging the thinking, working brain (right) of a freely behaving mouse (left). The miniature microscope enables cellular resolution and cell-type specific GCaMP6 imaging in ~1,200 excitatory CA1 hippocampal neurons during active behavior over months.
Courtesy: Schnitzer Lab, Stanford
The Inscopix miniature microscope is the core of an end-to-end integrated platform that empowers researchers to catalyze