An in vivo technique for investigating electrophysiological effects of centrally administered drugs on single neurons and network behaviour

Arun Gandrathi, Thomas Zheng, Patrick O'Brien, Idrish Ali, Terence J. O'Brien, Christopher R. French

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


Single neuronal juxtacellular recording with simultaneous cortical electroencephalogram (EEG) in whole-animal preparations in vivo has allowed the study of the behaviour of individual neurons in relation to whole brain activity. Data on single neuron firing, neural synchrony, network behaviour and their responses to pharmacological agents can be obtained with dual recordings. However, pharmacological effects on cellular and network activity during paired single-unit recordings have not been possible due to the difficulties in maintaining recordings of two cells for a prolonged period. Here, we describe a method of maintaining stable dual cell juxtacellular recordings from distinct brain regions, allowing the assessment of single unit activity before, during and after the intracerebroventricular (ICV) injection of drugs. Data collection using this technique allows correlation both between the two cells and with whole-brain EEG, and their responses to pharmacological interventions. This is particularly useful for the investigation of the effects of anti-epileptic drugs on animal models of epilepsy, where single unit activity of two cells from distinct regions can be correlated with each other and with whole-brain activity during pre-ictal, ictal and interictal states. We also describe standardised analytical methods of quantifying cell firing patterns, the rhythmicity of individual neurons and the synchronicity of firing between two neurons in ictal and interictal periods and their responses to drug exposure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)197-204
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Neuroscience Methods
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • Auto correlation
  • Cross correlation
  • EEG recording
  • Electrophysiology
  • Firing patterns
  • ICV injections
  • Waveform correlation

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