Immediate reuse of patch-clamp pipettes after ultrasonic cleaning

Sci Rep. 2024 Jan 18;14(1):1660. doi: 10.1038/s41598-024-51837-7.


The patch-clamp technique has revolutionized neurophysiology by allowing to study single neuronal excitability, synaptic connectivity, morphology, and the transcriptomic profile. However, the throughput in recordings is limited because of the manual replacement of patch-pipettes after each attempt which are often also unsuccessful. This has been overcome by automated cleaning the tips in detergent solutions, allowing to reuse the pipette for further recordings. Here, we developed a novel method of automated cleaning by sonicating the tips within the bath solution wherein the cells are placed, reducing the risk of contaminating the bath solution or internal solution of the recording pipette by any detergent and avoiding the necessity of a separate chamber for cleaning. We showed that the patch-pipettes can be used consecutively at least ten times and that the cleaning process does not negatively impact neither the brain slices nor other patched neurons. This method, combined with automated patch-clamp, highly improves the throughput for single and especially multiple recordings.

MeSH terms

  • Detergents*
  • Neurons / physiology
  • Neurophysiology
  • Patch-Clamp Techniques
  • Ultrasonics*


  • Detergents