How a high-speed microscope captures fleeting brain signals

Scientists have introduced a high-speed microscope to analyze brain function. With it, you can track changes in electrical voltage in neurons to the nearest millisecond, researchers at the University of California at Berkeley write.

Electrical and chemical signals are constantly changing in our brain, but their analysis requires a high-speed camera and an accurate microscope. Researchers at the University of California at Berkeley created such a device: a microscope with a camera that can take pictures of the brain of a mouse 1,000 times per second, for the first time detecting the passage of millisecond electrical pulses through neurons.

According to project lead researcher Na Ji, the new imaging technology combines two-photon fluorescence microscopy and optical laser scanning in a modern microscope. Hypothetically, its speed can be increased to 3,000 shots per second.

This is the first time that someone in three dimensions has shown the neural activity of such a large brain volume that far exceeds the capabilities of the electrodes. In addition, our visualization approach enables us to resolve the synapses of each neuron.

On ji

Synapses are places where neurotransmitters are released by one neuron to excite or suppress another. One goal of this study is to study the interaction of neurons across brain regions. According to scientists, this will reveal the causes of brain diseases, including neurodegenerative diseases.

Author: Flyn Braun
Graduated from Cambridge University. Previously, he worked in various diferent news media. Currently, it is a columnist of the us news section in the Free News editors.
Function: Editor