Search
Close this search box.
Search

New technique for eavesdropping on neurons

Researchers from the RadboudUMC Nijmegen, Netherlands developed an improved technique to read the activity of skin cells that have been altered in brain cells on special chips more accurately. The Journal of Visualized Experiments have taped this and put it online so that other neuroscientists can use this technique.

Shinya Yamanaka from Japan showed that it is possible to make a heart cell out of a kidney cell in the lab, or to change a skin cell into a brain cell. For the development of this iPSC (induced Pluripotent Stem Cell) technology Yamanaka received the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 2012.

Neurons on a chip

Since then, the iPSC technology is further developed and applied in various ways. The ‘neurons on a chip’ is a good example. Neurobiologist Nael Nadif Kasri of the RadboudUMC explains: "you can take some skin cells from a patient with a brain disorder for example. You turn these skin cells into stem cells and you then turn those stem cells into neurons. If you place these neurons on a chip, you can read the activity of a small but personal patients network of neurons. "

With this application you can investigate the specific problems in neurons of that individual patient. Not only of a single neuron, but also of the cooperating neurons in a network. In addition, this ‘neurons on a-chip’ technique also offers the possibility to investigate the effect of (new) drugs.

Unfortunately it doesn’t always work equally well. Kasri: "The process of skin cell to stem cell is still pretty slow. Besides that, we saw that it doesn’t work on all cells, many different types of brain cells emerged and they often grow insufficiently, causing them to not function optimally as well. In short, there is still room for improvement. "

New protocol

Neuroscientists Monica Frega and Bas van Gestel, led by Nael Nadif Kasri and Kees Albers of the Department of Genetics at the Dutch Radboudumc, developed a new protocol in which virtually all skin cells change very quickly – in three weeks – in well developed neurons of the same type. With this you know exactly which neurons you’re dealing with. In addition, the neurons neatly group together on a chip, on a micro-electrode array, which ‘floats’ in a liquid to keep the cells alive.

"Our adjustments to the protocol allow us to produce a network of neurons very efficiently," said Kasri, "of which the electrophysiological characteristics are examinable very precisely  with that chip. The protocol is taped by the Journal of Visualized Experiments (JoVE) and put online with accompanying text, so anyone can use it. "

Whixx

ICT&health World Conference 2024

Experience the future of healthcare at the ICT&health World Conference from May 14th to 16th, 2024!
Secure your ticket now and immerse yourself in groundbreaking technologies and innovative solutions.
Engage with fellow experts and explore the power of global collaborations.

Share this article!

Read also
Navigating Digital Maturity in Healthcare IT
Digital maturity vs. Reality. How to rethink the IT staff role in a hospital
Online health care icon application on smart phone
End-users of mobile health apps expect far more than a good design
Mayo Clinic started with its innovations for its ten million patients and demonstrated that its model worked, and that data could be ethically and responsibly used to drive innovations.
John Halamka: 'Create the Fear of Missing Out'
Balancing regulatory compliance with seamless adoption, healthcare navigates the integration of AI solutions.
A guide to implementing AI in healthcare amid the EU AI Act
AmyWebb-Stephen-Olker
Futurist Amy Webb claims that wearables will evolve into "connectables"
Digital health solutions empower patients to better manage their health and integrate care into their daily lives.
How to improve Digital Patient Engagement to streamline workflows
For people with diabetes, inaccurate blood glucose measurements can lead to errors in diabetes management, including taking the wrong dose of insulin, sulfonylureas, or other medications that can rapidly lower blood glucose.
Smartwatches measuring glucose level: Harmful but easy to buy fake innovations
How to introduce innovation and AI in healthcare organizations if there is no business model for prevention and quality – Our interview with Professor Ran Balicer, the Chief Innovation Officer at Clalit Health Services and founding Director of Clalit Research Institute.
I see no legitimate rationale for delaying the digital transformation in healthcare
Pioneering Cardiac Arrest Detection for Enhanced Survival.
CardioWatch Revolutionizes Cardiac Arrest Detection
Dr. Oscar Díaz-Cambronero, Head of Perioperative Medicine Department at La Fe Hospital, spearheads innovative telemonitoring initiatives revolutionizing patient care
Smartwatches Saving Lives Inside and Outside the Hospital
Follow us