Robust deep brain stimulation functional MRI procedures in rats and mice using an MR-compatible tungsten microwire electrode

Hsin-Yi Lai, Daniel L. Albaugh, Yu-Chieh Jill Kao, John Robert Younce, Yen-Yu Shih

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: To develop a series of robust and readily adoptable protocols for the application of deep brain stimulation (DBS)-functional MRI (fMRI) in rodents. Methods: DBS-fMRI procedures were conducted in rat and mouse under varying anesthetic conditions (isoflurane in rat and mouse, α-chloralose in rat). A homemade two-channel tungsten microwire electrode was used to minimize magnetic susceptibility artifacts, and was targeted to the ventral poster-omedial (VPM) thalamus for DBS-fMRI scanning procedures. Results: Compared with a commercially available MR-compatible electrode, the tungsten microwire generated greatly reduced magnetic-susceptibility artifacts. In the rat, VPM-DBS using the microwire electrode resulted in robust positive blood-oxygen- level-dependent signal changes in somatosensory cortex that were relatively independent of anesthetic type. In the mouse, VPM-DBS similarly generated large, positive neurovascular responses in somatosensory cortex that were detected using cerebral blood volume measurements. Conclusion: Collectively, this work describes reasonable and easily adoptable procedures for conducting DBS-fMRI studies in rodent models. The protocols developed herein may be extended to study DBS effects under numerous experimental conditions and at varying stimulation targets. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1246-1251
Number of pages6
JournalMagnetic Resonance in Medicine
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Deep brain stimulation
  • fMRI
  • Mouse
  • Rat
  • Tungsten electrode
  • chloralose
  • isoflurane
  • tungsten
  • biomaterial
  • Article
  • BOLD signal
  • brain blood volume
  • brain depth stimulation
  • controlled study
  • electrostimulation
  • functional magnetic resonance imaging
  • male
  • microelectrode
  • mouse
  • neuroscience
  • nonhuman
  • rat
  • somatosensory cortex
  • thalamus nucleus
  • anatomy and histology
  • animal
  • brain
  • device failure analysis
  • devices
  • equipment design
  • evoked response
  • nuclear magnetic resonance imaging
  • physiology
  • reproducibility
  • sensitivity and specificity
  • Sprague Dawley rat
  • synthesis
  • Animals
  • Biocompatible Materials
  • Brain
  • Deep Brain Stimulation
  • Equipment Design
  • Equipment Failure Analysis
  • Evoked Potentials
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Microelectrodes
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Tungsten


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