Slice it hot: acute adult brain slicing in physiological temperature

J Vis Exp. 2014 Oct 30;(92):e52068. doi: 10.3791/52068.

Abstract

Here we present a protocol for preparation of acute brain slices. This procedure is a critical element for electrophysiological patch-clamp experiments that largely determines the quality of results. It has been shown that omitting the cooling step during cutting procedure is beneficial in obtaining healthy slices and cells, especially when dealing with highly myelinated brain structures from mature animals. Even though the precise mechanism whereby elevated temperature supports neural health can only be speculated upon, it stands to reason that, whenever possible, the temperature in which the slicing is performed should be close to physiological conditions to prevent temperature related artifacts. Another important advantage of this method is the simplicity of the procedure and therefore the short preparation time. In the demonstrated method adult mice are used but the same procedure can be applied with younger mice as well as rats. Also, the following patch clamp experiment is performed on horizontal cerebellar slices, but the same procedure can also be used in other planes as well as other posterior areas of the brain.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Video-Audio Media

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / anatomy & histology
  • Brain / physiology*
  • Electrophysiological Phenomena
  • Mice
  • Microtomy / methods*
  • Patch-Clamp Techniques / methods
  • Rats