Effect of Biphasic kHz Field Stimulation on CA1 Pyramidal Neurons in Slices

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Sergei Viktorovich Karnup William De Groat Jonathan Beckel Changfeng Tai


Electrical stimulation in the kilohertz-frequency range has been successfully used for treatment of various neurological disorders. Nevertheless, the mechanisms underlying this stimulation are poorly understood. To study the effect of kilohertz-frequency electric fields on neuronal membrane biophysics we developed a reliable experimental method to measure responses of single neurons to kilohertz field stimulation in brain slice preparations. In the submerged brain slice pyramidal neurons of the CA1 subfield were recorded in the whole-cell configuration before, during and after stimulation with a biphasic charge balanced electric field at 2kHz, 5kHz or 10 kHz. The slice was placed in a 1 mm gap between two parallel 2 mm long platinum-iridium 0.1 mm diameter wire electrodes. Whole-cell recordings lasted for an hour or longer. Typically, a few 5-10 min long sessions of kHz-field stimulation (kHz-FS) with various frequency/amplitude combinations were applied to assess the type of neuronal response and possible changes of its membrane characteristics. It was found that kHz-field stimulation at all frequencies elicited reproducible excitatory neuronal responses lasting throughout stimulation period, but not after cessation of kHz-FS. During kHz-FS the rheobase usually decreased. In addition, spontaneous firing might be initiated in some silent neurons or became more intense in previously spontaneously active neurons. Response thresholds were in the range of 0.5-2 mA and were higher at higher frequencies. Blockade of glutamatergic synaptic transmission did not alter the magnitude of responses. Inhibitory synaptic input was not changed by kilohertz field stimulation. We conclude that kHz-frequency current applied in brain tissue has an excitatory effect on pyramidal neurons during stimulation. This effect is more prominent and occurs at a lower stimulus intensity at a frequency of 2kHz as compared to 5kHz and 10kHz.

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KARNUP, Sergei Viktorovich et al. Effect of Biphasic kHz Field Stimulation on CA1 Pyramidal Neurons in Slices. Medical Research Archives, [S.l.], v. 10, n. 8, aug. 2022. ISSN 2375-1924. Available at: <https://esmed.org/MRA/mra/article/view/2957>. Date accessed: 07 oct. 2022. doi: https://doi.org/10.18103/mra.v10i8.2957.
Research Articles


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