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Functional Imaging

Head: Ronald Jabs, PhD

 

The Functional Imaging group focuses on combined electrophysiological and fluorescence based recording techniques, performed on individual cells. This approach allows synergistic effects, exceeding information achievable when performing imaging and electrophysiological experiments separately. An excellent spacial resolution of functional imaging is achieved by employing Two Photon Microscopy. This technique deploys a high power infrared laser, pulsed in the femto-second range. Incorporated into a state-of-the-art multichannel Laser-Scan-Microscope, this system also provides high time resolution.


Within the field of glial cell research, our primary interest is on the interplay between the activation of voltage and ligand activated transmembrane ion channels and subsequent changes in the intracellular calcium concentrations. Currently we focus on the following projects:
  • Postsynaptic calcium dynamics at neuron-glia synapses (minimal stimulation technique, fast line scan imaging of fluorescent calcium indicators, time-correlated patch clamp recordings)
  • Characterisation of voltage gated calcium channels in NG2 glial cells (whole cell patch clamp analysis, time-correlated with CCD camera-based calcium imaging)
  • Study of putative neuromodulatory effects of NG2 glia (photolysis of caged IP3 or calcium in identified NG2 glial cell, simultaneous electrophysiological recordings and calcium imaging of adjacent cells)
  • Role of aquaporin channels in development and epilepsy (GAP-FRAP analysis in various mouse models)
  • Synaptic innervation of migrating cerebellar interneuron precursor cells (time lapse recordings in acute brain slices in combination with electrophysiological analysis of postsynaptic currents)
  • Purinergic signalling (functional analysis of P2X receptors genetically tagged with different fluorescent dyes, photolysis of caged ATP)
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