An in vitro preparation of frog nose and brain for the study of odour-evoked oscillatory activity

J Neurosci Methods. 1996 Oct;68(2):193-202. doi: 10.1016/0165-0270(96)00069-6.


An in vitro preparation is described that consists of frog brain rostral to the brainstem connected to the nasal epithelium by the olfactory nerves. Field potential and intracellular recordings from various brain structures can be obtained while stimulating the nasal epithelium with air-borne odours for at least 12 h after removal of the brain. Power spectra, amplitude and duration of odour-evoked and spontaneous field potentials in vitro are similar to those obtained from paralyzed, spinal cord pithed frogs. A brief puff of odorant applied to the olfactory epithelium produces a 1-2 s bout of 7-13 Hz oscillations in the field potential recorded from the ipsilateral bulb and various ventral, lateral and medial telencephalic structures. Odour evoked bulbar oscillations are maintained after removal of the telencephalon. Electrical stimulation of the olfactory nerves will not elicit oscillations like those evoked by odour stimulation. High-pressure puffs of non-odorised, moist air, elicit olfactory bulb oscillations similar to those evoked by lower pressure puffs of odorised air. Intracellular recordings from most mitral cells reveal oscillations in membrane potential that are phase-locked to the field potential. The extent to which these phase-locked oscillations produce action potentials varies, apparently as a function of the strength and duration of a long-lasting inhibitory potential that is superimposed upon the 7-13 Hz oscillations. This preparation is well-suited for the study of the cellular basis of oscillatory activity in vertebrate brain, and the function of sensory-evoked oscillatory responses in processing of sensory information.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / physiology*
  • Evoked Potentials / physiology*
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Nose / physiology*
  • Odorants*
  • Rana esculenta