The Wightman Group develops and utilizes fast-scan cyclic voltammetric (FSCV) methods to monitor sub-second neurotransmission events in the brain. Very small microelectrodes coupled to rapid electrochemical monitoring enable spatially- and temporally-resolved measurements of phasic neurotransmitter release in tissue slice preparations, anaesthetized animals, and freely-moving, behaving animals.
Using methods developed by our group, we are able to monitor changes in the concentrations of dopamine, norepinephrine, serotonin, oxygen, and other electroactive neurochemicals in response to pharmacological manipulation, electrical stimulation and even environmental stimuli.
(Left) Stimulated release of dopamine in vivo. The upper trace shows an increase in dopamine (shown on the color plot in green) and the lower shows a basic pH shift (shown in blue). The signals can be separated using principal component regression, a technique developed in our lab.