High-resolution microdrives for chronic silicon neural probes

and optogenetic fibre optic cannula implants

Designed to mate with our innovative silicon neural probes to allow precision in-brain movement in freely behaving animals, the nano-Drive offers you convenient co-alignment of fibre optics and fluidic cannulas in a small-footprint, lightweight device... even a mouse can carry multiple nano-Drives!

nano-Drive - the world’s smallest chronic multi-functional microdrive

  • Smallest, most accurate drives ever made - small 2 x 4 mm footprint, 0.5 gram weight, 205 μm/ turn with 5 mm travel.
  • Precision engineering - robust design with 2 μm tolerance ensures accuracy, enables sterilization and re-use.
  • Silicon neural probe compatible - purpose-designed to guarantee easy alignment of our silicon neural probes with drive axis.
  • Optogenetics compatible - easily co-align our silicon neural probes with a fiber optic cannula to form a chronically implantable optrode.
  • Scalable to multi-loci implants -small footprint facilitates targeting of multiple brain areas within the same animal, opening up network- and system-level experiments with combined recording and optogenetics.

Simple and convenient co-alignment of silicon neural probes with fiber optics and more...

Our chronic nano-Drives are designed to precisely co-align fiber cannulas alongside our silicon neural probes with spatially defined separation (300 or 650 microns between the fiber and probe) so as to minimize local tissue damage arising from the fiber, whilst maintaining proximity to the neurons being recorded to spill sufficient light power to drive your expressed target opsin. Our solution to the problem of uniting silicon neural probe microelectrodes with fiber optics allows both devices to be moved through the brain together in a freely-behaving animal, such that your electrodes are always in the right place with respect to your light-emission.

The chronic nano-Drives can also accommodate a fluidic injection guide-cannula alongside your optrode assembly - this facilitates an all-in-one approach whereby your chosen vector can be micro-injected at the end of your implant surgery via the guide-cannula, thereby guaranteeing that your optrode assembly will pass through your opsi-injected target. This innovative approach reduces mis-targeting errors within individual animals and makes redundant the traditional approach of two surgeries; surgery (1) = injection and incubation time, surgery (2) = optrode implant by approximating the injection target location!

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Small footprint, lightweight and scalable to multi-target implants

The uniquely small footprint of the nano-Drives facilitates implants targeting multiple brain regions, such as in the example shown above where orbitofrontal cortex in the right hemisphere and medial prefrontal cortex in the left hemisphere were implanted each with a 32 channel silicon neural probe. Note the small overall size of the implant; a benefit for your animals and their behavior. Click here to see real-time data from this animal.

Get close-up on our nano-Drive...

Tiny footprint, lightweight and able to carry probes, fiber optics and more

Chronic optrode assembly in action

A four-shank 64 channel probe with co-aligned fiber cannula smoothly penetrating rodent cortex [Courtesy of Maxym Myroshnychenko, Lab of Christopher Lapish, Indiana University - Purdue University Indianapolis, USA.]

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