Three-dimensional holographic photostimulation of the dendritic arbor

J Neural Eng. 2011 Aug;8(4):046002. doi: 10.1088/1741-2560/8/4/046002. Epub 2011 May 27.


Digital holography is an emerging technology that can generate complex light patterns for controlling the excitability of neurons and neural circuits. The strengths of this technique include a high efficiency with which available light can be effectively utilized and the ability to deliver highly focused light to multiple locations simultaneously. Here we demonstrate another strength of digital holography: the ability to generate instantaneous three-dimensional light patterns. This capability is demonstrated with the photolysis of caged glutamate on the dendritic arbor of hippocampal neurons, to study the nature of the integration of inputs arriving on multiple dendritic branches.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms
  • Dendrites / physiology*
  • Dendritic Spines / physiology
  • Glutamic Acid / chemistry
  • Glutamic Acid / radiation effects
  • Hippocampus / cytology
  • Hippocampus / radiation effects
  • Holography / methods*
  • Light
  • Neural Pathways / physiology
  • Neurons / physiology
  • Photic Stimulation / instrumentation*
  • Photolysis
  • Software


  • Glutamic Acid