Dissertation Defense, Gaoshan Jing

Dissertation Defense, Gaoshan Jing

Title:                      A Multi-Electrode Array (MEA) System for Patterned
Neural Network

Date:                     Tuesday, December  1, 2009

Time:                     10:45am

Location:              Rauch Business Center, Room #077


Multi-Electrode Array (MEA) systems have been widely used as in vitro recording tools to study electrogenic cells and tissues, such as neurons and cardiac myocytes (heart muscle cells). The primary limitation of a conventional MEA system is its difficulty in accurately tracking and investigating the response of specific, individual neurons in vitro because the cells grow randomly on the surface of the MEA chip. One way to remedy this problem is to implement MEAs capable of supporting patterned neuronal networks, which control individual neuron growth in predetermined positions on top of electrodes. Development of such a novel MEA chip is very important for better understanding of how neural networks function.

We will describe the development of a Multi-Electrode Array (MEA) system to detect electrical activities of patterned neural networks. First, this talk will give an overview of the progress and the challenges of current MEA technologies. Then, we will describe the initial stage of development of a unique multi-electrode array (MEA) with a novel cell patterning technique for cultured neural networks, an electronic package designed to stimulate and record signals from the MEA, and a software package that automates and simplifies data collection. This MEA is capable of supporting patterned neural networks in vitro. The unique features of this BioMEMS system are: (1) precise and exclusive positioning of the neural cell bodies in the electrode region, (2) definition of interconnecting pathways among the neurons by using patterned self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) which guide growth, and (3) one-to-one stimulation and recording from each sited neuron. This will be an enabling technology for three major disciplines: in vitro neurotoxicology, neuroscience, and neuropharmacology.


Ph.D. Committee:

Professor Svetlana Tatic-Lucic (Advisor)
Professor Miltiadis Hatalis
Professor Boon Ooi
Professor Susan Perry
Professor Marvin White