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A Novel Way to Go Whole Cell in Patch-Clamp Experiments

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6 Author(s)
Samsoon Inayat ; Department of Biomedical Engineering , Northwestern University, Evanston, USA ; Yan Zhao ; Donald R. Cantrell ; Dmitriy A. Dikin
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With a conventional patch-clamp electrode, an Ag/AgCl wire sits stationary inside the pipette. To move from the gigaseal cell-attached configuration to whole-cell recording, suction is applied inside the pipette. We have designed and developed a novel “Pushpen patch-clamp electrode,” in which a W wire insulated and wound with Ag/AgCl wire can move linearly inside the pipette. The W wire has a conical tip, which can protrude from the pipette tip like a push pen, a procedure we call the “Pushpen Operation.” We use the Pushpen operation to impale the cell membrane in cell-attached configuration to go whole cell without disruption of the gigaseal. We successfully recorded whole-cell currents from Chinese hamster ovarian cells expressing influenza A virus protein A/M2, after obtaining whole-cell configuration with the Pushpen operation. This novel method of achieving whole-cell configuration may have a higher success rate than the conventional patch-clamp technique.

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering  (Volume:57 ,  Issue: 11 )