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Gen Physiol Biophys. 2005 Sep;24(3):337-48.

Computer-aided formation of the whole-cell patch-clamp recording configuration.

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Institute of Molecular Physiology and Genetics, Slovak Academy of Sciences, Vlárska 5, 833 34 Bratislava 37, Slovakia.


The conventional patch-clamp technique requires well-trained experimenter. Few commercial automated patch-clamp systems, designed for drug development, are better suited for large-scale research then for standard electrophysiological experiments. Here we describe a state machine for automated recognition of recording states of the patch-clamp experiment. The principle of the state machine is based on evaluation of the charge carried by membrane current during specific time segments in responses to square wave voltage stimulation. The state machine may serve for generating various sound alerts, signals for automated control of other devices, assistance in micromanipulation, internal pipette pressure control, and holding potential adjustments. Algorithm of the state machine, designed to cover wide variety of cell types, was successfully tested on rat ventricular myocytes.

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