Institute of Neuroscience

Wolfson Foundation Facility

Wolfson Foundation Facility for Neuroimaging of Brain Dynamics in Health and Disease

In 2006 a generous gift from The Wolfson Foundation enabled us to establish a facility to conduct research on live human brain tissue obtained during neurosurgery.

Donated human brain tissue makes it possible to study neuronal activity under normal and pathological conditions in order to understand the basis of neurological and psychiatric disorders, such as epilepsy and schizophrenia.

The imaging and recording facility permits us to build important bridges between single cell and network activity and between human disorders and animal models that will aid the development of novel therapies. 

The facility includes:

  • confocal microscopic systems for high speed imaging of intracellular calcium in multiple neurons;
  • a system for near real-time imaging of voltage-sensitive dyes for detailed neuronal network analysis;
  • a high-density multielectrode array for recording electrical activity across brain slices;
  • and equipment to perform ultrastructural analysis of the human tissue following periods of recording.

Additional funding from the Medical Research Council has enabled us to also conduct in vivo recording from implanted 64 channel electrode grids for comparison with the in vitro measures. The facility is currently headed by Dr Mark Cunningham and all enquiries should be directed to him.