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Anal Chem. 2011 Jul 1;83(13):5207-13. doi: 10.1021/ac2003938. Epub 2011 Jun 7.

Push-pull perfusion sampling with segmented flow for high temporal and spatial resolution in vivo chemical monitoring.

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  • 1University of Michigan, Department of Chemistry, 930 N. University Avenue, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109, USA.


Low-flow push-pull perfusion is a sampling method that yields better spatial resolution than competitive methods like microdialysis. Because of the low flow rates used (50 nL/min), it is challenging to use this technique at high temporal resolution which requires methods of collecting, manipulating, and analyzing nanoliter samples. High temporal resolution also requires control of Taylor dispersion during sampling. To meet these challenges, push-pull perfusion was coupled with segmented flow to achieve in vivo sampling at 7 s temporal resolution at 50 nL/min flow rates. By further miniaturizing the probe inlet, sampling with 200 ms resolution at 30 nL/min (pull only) was demonstrated in vitro. Using this method, L-glutamate was monitored in the striatum of anesthetized rats. Up to 500 samples of 6 nL each were collected at 7 s intervals, segmented by an immiscible oil and stored in a capillary tube. The samples were assayed offline for L-glutamate at a rate of 15 samples/min by pumping them into a reagent addition tee fabricated from Teflon where reagents were added for a fluorescent enzyme assay. Fluorescence of the resulting plugs was monitored downstream. Microinjection of 70 mM potassium in physiological buffered saline evoked l-glutamate concentration transients that had an average maxima of 4.5 ± 1.1 μM (n = 6 animals, 3-4 injections each) and rise times of 22 ± 2 s. These results demonstrate that low-flow push-pull perfusion with segmented flow can be used for high temporal resolution chemical monitoring and in complex biological environments.

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