NYMC Faculty Publications


Improvements in Simultaneous Sodium and Calcium Imaging

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Publication Date

January 2019




High speed imaging of ion concentration changes in neurons is an important and growing tool for neuroscientists. We previously developed a system for simultaneously measuring sodium and calcium changes in small compartments in neurons (Miyazaki and Ross, 2015). We used this technique to analyze the dynamics of these ions in individual pyramidal neuron dendritic spines (Miyazaki and Ross, 2017). This system is based on high speed multiplexing of light emitting diodes (LEDs) and classic organic indicators. To improve this system we made additional changes, primarily incorporating lasers in addition to the LEDs, more sophisticated imaging protocols, and the use of newer sodium and calcium indicators. This new system generates signals with higher signal to noise ratio (S/N), less background fluorescence, and less photodynamic damage. In addition, by using longer wavelength indicators instead of indicators sensitive in the UV range, it allows for the incorporation of focal uncaging along with simultaneous imaging, which should extend the range of experiments.