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J Neurophysiol. 2013 Feb;109(3):900-11. doi: 10.1152/jn.00593.2012. Epub 2012 Oct 31.

Recording EEG in immature rats with a novel miniature telemetry system.

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  • 1Dept. of Physiology, Univ. of Utah School of Medicine, Salt Lake City, UT 84108-6500, USA.


Serial EEG recordings from immature rat pups are extremely difficult to obtain but important for analyzing animal models of neonatal seizures and other pediatric neurological conditions as well as normal physiology. In this report, we describe the features and applications of a novel miniature telemetry system designed to record EEG in rat pups as young as postnatal day 6 (P6). First, we have recorded electrographic seizure activity in two animal models of neonatal seizures, hypoxia- and kainate-induced seizures at P7. Second, we describe a viable approach for long-term continuous EEG monitoring of naturally reared rat pups implanted with EEG at P6. Third, we have used serial EEG recordings to record age-dependent changes in the background EEG signal as the animals matured from P7 to P11. The important advantages of using miniature wireless EEG technology are: 1) minimally invasive surgical implantation; 2) a device form-factor that is compatible with housing of rat pups with the dam and littermates; 3) serial recordings of EEG activity; and 4) low power consumption of the unit, theoretically allowing continuous monitoring for up to 2 yr without surgical reimplantation. The miniature EEG telemetry system provides a technical advance that allows researchers to record continuous and serial EEG recordings in neonatal rodent models of human neurological disorders, study the progression of the disease, and then assess possible therapies using quantitative EEG as an outcome measure. This new technical approach should improve animal models of human conditions that rely on EEG monitoring for diagnosis and therapy.

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