A novel wireless brain stimulation device for long-term use in freely moving mice

Sci Rep. 2019 Apr 23;9(1):6444. doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-42910-7.


Deep brain stimulation (DBS) has been used in clinical settings for many years despite a paucity of knowledge related to the anatomical and functional substrates that lead to benefits and/or side-effects in various disease contexts. In order to maximize the potential of this approach in humans, a better understanding of its mechanisms of action is absolutely necessary. However, the existing micro-stimulators available for pre-clinical models, are limited by the lack of relevant small size devices. This absence prevents sustained chronic stimulation and real time monitoring of animals during stimulation, parameters that are critical for comparison to clinical findings. We therefore sought to develop and refine a novel small wireless micro-stimulator as a means by which to study consequent behavioural to molecular changes in experimental animals. Building on previous work from our group, we refined our implantable micro-stimulator prototype, to be easily combined with intravital 2-photon imaging. Using our prototype we were able to replicate the well described clinical benefits on motor impairment in a mouse model of Parkinson's disease in addition to capturing microglia dynamics live during stimulation. We believe this new device represents a useful tool for performing pre-clinical studies as well as dissecting brain circuitry and function.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Deep Brain Stimulation*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Parkinson Disease* / physiopathology
  • Parkinson Disease* / therapy
  • Wireless Technology*