electrodes from the protective box
remove an electrode from
the box, first, spread the slot in the foam and grasp the uninsulated
electrode with forceps or fingers, then gently lift
it out. Fit into headstage or coupler (e.g. NL04).
It is advisable to
watchmaker’s forceps to handle the electrode, however avoid touching the
glass as it can fracture if pressure is applied there by forceps.
may also use fingers, but it is advised to operate with great care,
minimising any damage to the electrode shank; in particular, the
electrode tip is extremely delicate and easily damaged.
electrodes outside of boxes; the tip will be damaged, rendering the
If you suspect tip
damage, examine the electrode tip
under light microscope with
higher magnification and check the electrode impedance.
into tubing or NL04 holder
microelectrodes easily fit into 25G, 26G or
27G hypodermic needle tubing. The uninsulated end of
the electrode requires slight bending (e.g. 20deg,
5mm from the electrode end),
and then can be carefully inserted into the tubing. This prevents the
slipping out of the holder and ensures optimal electrical contact with
holder. We recommend electrode holder: NL04.
microelectrodes can also
be soldered into any of above stainless steel tubings. Soldering
tungsten onto stainless steel can be a difficult process; it is
use a professional soldering station and stainless steel flux.
microelectrodes can be
also crimped within any of above stainless steel tubings or within any
commercially available type of pin holder. It is strongly recommended
a professional crimping tool to avoid any personal accident/injury or
short-tip electrodes are intended
for single-unit spike recordings and have impedances of several MOhms — this results in high selectivity. It is advised to use
micropositioners with minimum advancing steps of 0.5-2µm for reliable
(smaller cells require finer searching step).
signal-to-noise ratio is obtained when using an
electrode preamplifier (as close as possible to probing electrode)
an input impedance at least one order of magnitude higher than the
electrode impedance. Moreover, consider
avoiding shielding of concentric cables connecting electrode to
which can significantly reduce the SNR due to its capacitive shunting
It is strongly
perform the experiment in shielded/grounded cabinets (e.g.
booth, Faraday cage) with internal equipment being battery-powered to
minimise the mains hum. Otherwise, recordings will be contaminated
with mains frequency (50Hz/60Hz).
longevity, it is best to clean electrodes
immediately after removing from the tissue. The electrodes
cleaned by sonication, e.g. in 30% sodium
hypochlorite for 5 minutes, then should be thoroughly agitated in
water and then ethanol. Once cleaned, it is advised to check
the condition of electrode
tip under microscope and to measure its impedance.
If tissue remains at the tip after cleaning, repeat the
Dust particles from
air easily adhere to electrode
tips. Thorough rinsing
with distilled water usually removes all dust deposits. However,
electrodes stored for extended periods of time may need sonication
cleaning in distilled water.
|Disposing of used electrodes
electrodes are not
harmful to the environment and can be disposed of as a sharp item.