High-resolution three-dimensional extracellular recording of neuronal activity with microfabricated electrode arrays

Jiangang Du, Ingmar H. Riedel-Kruse, Janna C. Nawroth, Michael L. Roukes, Gilles Laurent, Sotiris C. Masmanidis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Scopus citations


Microelectrode array recordings of neuronal activity present significant opportunities for studying the brain with single-cell and spike-time precision. However, challenges in device manufacturing constrain dense multisite recordings to two spatial dimensions, whereas access to the three-dimensional (3D) structure of many brain regions appears to remain a challenge. To overcome this limitation, we present two novel recording modalities of silicon-based devices aimed at establishing 3D functionality. First, we fabricated a dual-side electrode array by patterning recording sites on both the front and back of an implantable microstructure. We found that the majority of single-unit spikes could not be simultaneously detected from both sides, suggesting that in addition to providing higher spatial resolution measurements than that of single-side devices, dual-side arrays also lead to increased recording yield. Second, we obtained recordings along three principal directions with a multi-layer array and demonstrated 3D spike source localization within the enclosed measurement space. The large-scale integration of such dual-side and multilayer arrays is expected to provide massively parallel recording capabilities in the brain.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1671-1678
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of neurophysiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2009
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • Physiology


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