Depth-specific optogenetic control in vivo with a scalable, high density µLED neural probe

Robert Scharf, Tomomi Tsunematsu, Niall McAlinden, Martin D. Dawson, Shuzo Sakata, Keith Mathieson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

104 Citations (Scopus)
166 Downloads (Pure)


Controlling neural circuits is a powerful approach to uncover a causal link between neural activity and behaviour. Optogenetics has been widely adopted by the neuroscience community as it offers cell-type-specific perturbation with millisecond precision. However, these studies require light delivery in complex patterns with cellular-scale resolution, while covering a large volume of tissue at depth in vivo. Here we describe a novel high-density silicon-based microscale light-emitting diode (µLED) array, consisting of up to ninety-six 25 µm-diameter µLEDs emitting at a wavelength of 450 nm with a peak irradiance of 400 mW/mm2. A width of 100 µm, tapering to a 1 µm point, and a 40 µm thickness help minimise tissue damage during insertion. Thermal properties permit a set of optogenetic operating regimes, with ~0.5°C average temperature increase. We demonstrate depth-dependent activation of mouse neocortical neurons in vivo, offering an inexpensive novel tool for the precise manipulation of neural activity.
Original languageEnglish
Article number28381
Number of pages10
JournalScientific Reports
Publication statusPublished - 23 Jun 2016


  • neural circuits
  • neural activity
  • neuroscience
  • optogenetics
  • microscale light-emitting diodes


Dive into the research topics of 'Depth-specific optogenetic control in vivo with a scalable, high density µLED neural probe'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this