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14 March 2012 Impact of nanosecond pulsed electric fields on primary hippocampal neurons
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Cellular exposure to nanosecond pulsed electric fields (nsPEF) are believed to cause immediate creation of nanopores in the plasma membrane. These nanopores enable passage of small ions, but remain impermeable to larger molecules like propidium iodide. Previous work has shown that nanopores are stable for minutes after exposure, suggesting that formation of nanopores in excitable cells could lead to prolonged action potential inhibition. Previously, we measured the formation of nanopores in neuroblastoma cells by measuring the influx of extracellular calcium by preloading cells with Calcium Green-AM. In this work, we explored the impact of changing the width of a single nsPEF, at constant amplitude, on uptake of extracellular calcium ions by primary hippocampal neurons (PHN). Calcium Green was again used to measure the influx of extracellular calcium and FM1-43 was used to monitor changes in membrane conformation. The observed thresholds for nanopore formation in PHN by nsPEF were comparable to those measured in neuroblastoma. This work is the first study of nsPEF effects on PHN and strongly suggests that neurological inhibition by nanosecond electrical pulses is highly likely at doses well below irreversible damage.
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Caleb C. Roth, Jason A. Payne, Marjorie A. Kuipers, Gary L. Thompson, Gerald J. Wilmink, and Bennett L. Ibey "Impact of nanosecond pulsed electric fields on primary hippocampal neurons", Proc. SPIE 8207, Photonic Therapeutics and Diagnostics VIII, 820763 (14 March 2012);

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