Multifunctional fibers for simultaneous optical, electrical and chemical interrogation of neural circuits in vivo

Fibers combine optical, electrical, and chemical signaling


Brain function depends on simultaneous electrical, chemical and mechanical signaling at the cellular level. This multiplicity has confounded efforts to simultaneously measure or modulate these diverse signals in vivo. Here we present fiber probes that allow for simultaneous optical stimulation, neural recording and drug delivery in behaving mice with high resolution. These fibers are fabricated from polymers by means of a thermal drawing process that allows for the integration of multiple materials and interrogation modalities into neural probes. Mechanical, electrical, optical and microfluidic measurements revealed high flexibility and functionality of the probes under bending deformation. Long-term in vivo recordings, optogenetic stimulation, drug perturbation and analysis of tissue response confirmed that our probes can form stable brain-machine interfaces for at least 2 months. We expect that our multifunctional fibers will permit more detailed manipulation and analysis of neural circuits deep in the brain of behaving animals than achievable before.

Nature biotechnology
Andres Canales
Researcher at Advanced Silicon Group
Xiaoting Jia
Assistant Professor at Virginia Tech
Ulrich P Froriep
Project Director at Fraunhofer Institute
Ryan A Koppes
Assistant Professor at Northeastern University
Christina Tringides
PhD student at Harvard/MIT HST program
Jennifer Selvidge
PhD student at UCSB MSE
Chi Lu
Engineer at Applied Materials
Polina Anikeeva
Polina Anikeeva
Professor in Materials Science and Engineering
Professor in Brain and Cognitive Sciences
Associate Director, Research Laboratory of Electronics

My goal is to combine the current knowledge of biology and nanoelectronics to develop materials and devices for minimally invasive treatments for neurological and neuromuscular diseases.