Optical modulation and sensing of neuronal activity

DIPC Seminars

Blanca del Rosal
RMIT University, Australia
Donostia International Physics Center (Hybrid Seminar)
Aitzol Garcia-Etxarri
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Optical modulation and sensing of neuronal activity

Optical techniques are an emerging alternative to conventional, electrode-based techniques for modulating and recording the electrical activity of neurons. Optically active nanoparticles are a key piece of the most recent developments in the field, enabling selective neuromodulation and potentially overcoming the limitations of currently available optical voltage sensors. In this talk, I will discuss the state of the art and key challenges in nanoparticle-mediated optical neuromodulation and sensing. We will first discuss optical neuromodulation, focusing on photothermal stimulation mediated by plasmonic nanoparticles. As an example, I will present our most recent results on gold-nanorod-mediated optical stimulation of retinal neurons.[1] The second part of the talk will focus on the much less-developed topic of nanoparticle- based optical voltage sensing.[2] Along with the key requirements for optical voltage sensors and the specific challenges intrinsic to the use of nanoparticles for monitoring neuronal activity, I will discuss the unexpected challenges we have encountered when calibrating the voltage sensitivity of photoluminescent nanoparticles.
[1] Begeng JM, Tong W, del Rosal B, Ibbotson M, Kameneva T, Stoddart PR. ACS Nano 2023 1; 17(3):2079- 88
[2] Goris T, Langley DP, Stoddart PR, del Rosal B. J. Lumin. 2021, 230, 117719

Zoom: https://dipc-org.zoom.us/j/98303174322
Youtube: https://youtube.com/live/86QD1N9jT9I