Patterned photo-stimulation

Recent progress in neural photo-stimulation now enables the development of  systems that can use light patterns to excite spatio-temporally complex activity patterns both in vitro and in vivo.  The first patterned photo-stimulation system (Shoham et al., Nat. Methods 2005) used a custom Acousto-Optical deflector to rapidly deflect a UV laser beam for uncaging glutamate. More recently, we have been using ChannelRhodopsinII expressing neurons, and are developing projector-based and high-rate digital-holographic pattern excitation systems.


Our central goal is to apply pattern-photo stimulation in an optical retinal   neuroprosthetic. This device will bypass dead photo-receptors and provide an  artificial sense of vision in degenerative diseases of the outer retina like Retinitis   Pigmentosa (RP) and Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD).  The core  components of retinal neuro-prostheses are a method for optically exciting the  neurons, a suitable micro-display, and components for capturing the visual input  and for translating it into cellular stimulation patterns.

Selected publications: