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Methods Protoc. 2019 Mar;2(1). pii: 19. doi: 10.3390/mps2010019. Epub 2019 Feb 15.

Protocol for Construction of Rat Nerve Stimulation Cuff Electrodes.

Author information

School of Brain and Behavioral Sciences, The University of Texas at Dallas, Richardson, TX 75080-3021, USA; (M.U.R.); (M.P.K.), (S.A.H.).
School of Biomedical Engineering, The University of Texas at Dallas, Richardson, TX 75080-3021, USA;
Texas Biomedical Device Center (TxBDC), The University of Texas at Dallas, Richardson, TX 75080-3021, USA;


Peripheral nerve stimulation has emerged as a platform therapy to treat a wide range of disorders. Continued development and translation of these strategies requires that researchers have access to reliable, customizable electrodes for nerve stimulation. Here, we detail procedures to build three different configurations of cuff electrodes with varying numbers and orientations of contacts for nerve stimulation in rats. These designs are built with simple, widely available materials, using platinum-iridium electrodes assembled into polyurethane tubing. Moreover, the designs can easily be customized to increase versatility and individualize for specific stimulation applications. This protocol provides a resource to facilitate the construction and customization of stimulation cuffs to support preclinical nerve stimulation research.


cuff electrode; micro-construction; vagal nerve; vagus nerve; vagus nerve stimulation

Conflict of interest statement

Conflicts of Interest: M.P.K. is a consultant for, and has a financial interest in, MicroTransponder, Inc., which is developing therapies using VNS. C.T.E. is married to an employee of MicroTransponder, Inc. All other authors report no conflicts of interest. The founding sponsors had no role in the design of the study; in the collection, analyses, or interpretation of data; in the writing of the manuscript, and in the decision to publish the results. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Biological Technologies Office (BTO).

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