||Development and Characterization of Microelectrode Arrays Platform for Three-Dimensional Neuronal Network and Neurological Disease Applications
||Department of BioMedical Engineering
3D cell culture
Oxygen glucose deprivation
Insulin-like growth factor 1
Alzheimer’s disease propagation
於神經疾病探討研究中，我們建立可以用來探討神經病理機制之體外神經疾病模型，如體外缺血性中風與近似阿茲海默症之Tau蛋白質異常沉積疾病模型。於體外缺血性中風模型建立探討中，首先藉由微循環環境產生缺血缺氧性中風，利用電阻抗量測於正常與受到生長素介質保護下之大腦皮質細胞進行電阻抗量測。於生物性測試證據中，經由50與100 ng/mL生長素介質保護之大腦皮質細胞顯示出較高的細胞存活率，且於粒線體膜電位表現中無過極化現象之產生。於電阻抗量測結果中，大腦皮質神經細胞經過缺血缺氧後，電阻抗值降低直接反應出細胞貼附性減少。但於50 and 100 ng/mL生長素介質保護之大腦皮質細胞電阻抗量測結果可發現，經過缺血缺氧實驗後，其阻抗值呈現緩慢減少到進行缺血缺氧實驗前的50%，此結果明顯表示，50 and 100 ng/mL生長素介質保護大腦皮質細胞具備較佳細胞貼附。此多時間點連續電阻抗量測結果證明，利用整合微循環系統微電極陣列平台，可於缺血缺氧中風模型下進行即時觀測，且可觀察大腦皮質細胞由生長素介質保護下之效果。
Electrophysiological characterization of neuronal networks plays important roles on understanding functional network behaviors. Microelectrode arrays (MEAs)-based platform with impedimetric sensing and extracellular recording could not only monitoring the onset dynamic neuronal network behavior but also with highly feasibility working as long-term observation tool thorough stable cell culture environment. The aims of this study are utilizing MEAs-based platform for comparing fundamental electrophysiological properties of in vitro/ in vivo 3D neuronal network. It also proven with the capacities works as in vitro 2D neurological disease models for ischemic stroke and Alzheimer’s disease (AD) model for pathological mimicking condition.
For constructing 3D neuronal network, cortical neuronal cells were cultured on Matrigel which could grow in a 3D distribution with neurite extension in different depths and exhibit comparable cell survival rate to 2D neuronal culture. The impedimetric measurement was applied to monitor the neuronal growth which was correlated to gradual increase of resistive component of impedance. The neuronal firing pattern exhibited typical spike waveform. The spike raster plot also proved the functional activity of 3D neuronal network. For In-vivo recording, a flexible neuroprobe using SU-8 was designed and fabricated as implant device for complex brain tissue. In vitro and in vivo electrical sensing showed that the improved tissue compatibility compared to that of the traditional rigid neuroprobe. The validation of neuroprobe was achieved by in vitro mechanical and cytotoxicity tests as well as in vivo neural recording and immunohistological staining. Our studies showed that SU-8 neuroprobe possessed enough stress for pentrated into brain tissue and remained flexibility to comply micro-movement of soft tissue with minor immune responses. The proposed SU-8 neuroprobe can achieve in vivo electrophysiological recordings at a signal-noise-ratio of greater than 7.
The in vitro neurological disease models provide an opportunity for getting insight into the pathological mechanism of diseased neuronal networks including ischemic stroke model and AD-like tauopathy model in this study. For the in vitro ischemic stroke model, we utilized impedimetric sensing technique for monitoring the time-course impedimetric changes in normal and insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1)-protected cortical neurons under the ischemic insult of oxygen glucose deprivation (OGD) created in a micro-perfusion environment. From biological evidences, the cortical neurons treated with 50 and 100 ng/mL IGF-1 showed higher survival rates and no occurrence of the hyperpolarization of MMP during the re-oxygenation period. The impedimetric sensing results demonstrated that the measured impedance of cortical neurons decreased due to cell detachment under the insult of OGD. The measured impedance of IGF-1-protected cortical neurons slowly decreased to about 50% of the original value compared to saline control which indicates improved cell adhesion under OGD conditions. The time-course impedimetric sensing results showed that the proposed MEAs-based platform incorporated with a microperfusion environment can be used for the real-time monitoring of cortical neurons under in vitro OGD and the IGF-1 protective effect against OGD-induced ischemic neuronal death.
For AD disease model, we designed the disease propagation through a simple in vitro cortical neuronal network which were used for investigating the structural and functional differences between diseased and healthy neuronal populations at an axon-connected manner. The structural data via hyper-phosphorylated tau (hp-tau) and cytoskeleton alternation were captured from fluorescence imaging. Also, the functional data via spike number ratio and burst number per minute ratio were calculated from extracellular recording. From the structural data, we observed a disease propagation from diseased neuron population (hp-tau induced by okadaic-acid (OA) treatment), spreading through an axon-connected region then affecting the healthy neuron. The delayed response of neuritic degeneration from diseased neuron population propagated to the healthy neuron population was also observed through the neuronal cytoskeleton alternation from immunocytochemistry staining. From the functionality of AD cell models, we observed immediate electrophysiological pattern changes (spike number decreased) prior to the structural alternation occurring (neuritic degeneration). With advance in this simulated disease propagation model, the candidate treatment method or possible target mechanism could be validated.
In summary, this proposed MEAs-based platform provides electrophysiological characterization functionalities for in vitro/in vivo 3D neuronal network and also with integrated pathological environmental setup opens the way for specific neurological application. Our designed physiological/ pathological neuronal culture model not only could help the investigation of fundamental electrophysiological properties of 3D neuronal network but also reveal the potential treatment mechanism through neurological disease simulation environment.
List of Tables ...XIIII
List of Figures ...XIIII
Chapter 1 Introduction
1.1 Introduction to planar microelectrode arrays 1
1.2 Impedance measurement of the neuron-electrode interface 2
1.3 Extracellular stimulation and recording of in vitro neuronal networks 3
1.4 Three-dimensional cell culture 4
1.5 Three-dimensional microelectrode arrays 6
1.6 Impedance measurement for in vitro 3D cellular environment 7
1.7 Extracellular recording of in vitro 3D neuronal networks 8
1.8 Novel flexible microelectrode arrays 9
1.9 Toward disease model application: in vitro ischemic stroke model 10
1.10 Impedimetric monitoring for in vitro ischemic stroke conditions 11
1.11 Toward disease model application: in vitro Alzheimer’s disease model 12
1.12 Hyper-phosphorylated microtubule-associate protein tau in Alzheimer’s disease 12
1.13 Compartmentalized microfluidic neuronal culture 13
1.14 The aims of this study 14
Chapter 2 Material and Methods
2.1 Fabrication and characterization of 3D tip-based MEAs 17
2.1.1 Fabrication process of 3D tip-based MEAs 17
2.1.2 In vitro 3D cortical neuronal culture 18
2.1.3 Florescence imaging of in vitro 3D cortical culture 19
2.1.4 Electrophysiological characterization of in vitro 3D neuronal networks 19
2.2 Fabrication and characterization of SU-8 Flexible Neuroprobe 20
2.2.1 Design and fabrication of SU-8 neuroprobe 20
2.2.2 Evaluation of mechanical properties of SU-8 neuroprobe 22
2.2.3 In vitro viability test and extracellular recording using neuroprobe 24
2.2.4 In vivo electrophysiological recording and immunobiological assays 24
2.3 Impedimetric monitoring of IGF-1 protection of in vitro cortical neurons under
ischemic conditions 27
2.3.1 Fabrication of microelectrode arrays 27
2.3.2 Cell culture and oxygen-glucose deprivation model 28
2.3.3 Impedance sensing under normal and OGD conditions 30
2.3.4 Measurement of cell viability and mitochondrial membrane potential 32
2.3.5 Statistical analysis 33
2.4 Disease Propagation of Okadaic Acid-Induced Tauopathy Model via
Compartmentalized MEAs Device 33
2.4.1 Design and integration of compartmentalized microfluidic device with
2.4.2 Preparation and plating procedure for cortical neuronal culture 36
2.4.3 Induction of tau-hyperphosphorylation via okadaic acid treatment 37
2.4.4 Extracellular recording of cortical neuronal population inside
compartmentalized MEAs 38
2.4.5 Immunocytochemistry staining 39
2.4.6 Statistical analysis 40
Chapter 3 Results
3.1 Fabrication and characterization of 3D tip-based MEAs 41
3.1.1 Fabrication of 3D tip MEAs 41
3.1.2 Morphological observations and cell viability of 2D versus 3D cell culture 41
3.1.3 Impedimetric sensing of in vitro 3D neuronal network formation 43
3.1.4 Extracellular recording of in vitro 3D neuronal activities 45
3.2 Fabrication and characterization of SU-8 Flexible Neuroprobe 46
3.2.1 Fabrication and electrical characterization of SU-8 neuroprobe 46
3.2.2 Mechanical characterization of SU-8 neuroprobe 48
3.2.3 In vitro cytotoxicity testing assay and extracellular physiological recording 50
3.2.4 In vivo immune response and electrophysiological recording 52
3.3 Impedimetric monitoring of IGF-1 protection of in vitro cortical neurons under
ischemic conditions 54
3.3.1 Time-course resistive component of impedance monitoring of cell growth
on the electrode 54
3.3.2 Cell viability assessment 56
3.3.3 MMP assay 57
3.3.4 Time-course resistive component impedance monitoring of OGD-induced
cell detachment 59
3.4 Disease Propagation of Okadaic Acid-Induced Tauopathy Model via
Compartmentalized MEAs Device 60
3.4.1 Compartmentalized microfluidic device integrated with MEAs 60
3.4.2 Cytoskeleton alternation under OA-induced disease propagation 61
3.4.3 Propagation of tau hyper-phosphorylation between diseased and healthy
Neuronal populations 64
3.4.4 Spike number ratio of spontaneous activities during disease propagation 67
3.4.5 Bursts per minute ratio of spontaneous activities during disease propagation 68
Chapter 4 Discussion
4.1 Fabrication and characterization of 3D tip-based MEAs 71
4.2 Fabrication and characterization of SU-8 Flexible Neuroprobe 73
4.3 Impedimetric monitoring of IGF-1 protection of in vitro cortical neurons under
ischemic conditions 76
4.4 Disease Propagation of Okadaic Acid-Induced Tauopathy Model via
Compartmentalized MEAs Device 80
Chapter 5 Conclusion 88
List of Tables
Table 1 Summary of numerical data of spike number ratio and bursts per minute ratio under high and low concentration (600 nM and 60 nM, respectively) of OA treatment at all selected experiment time period 70
List of Figures
Figure.1 (a) Fabrication process of 3D tip MEAs. (b) Scanning electron microscopic imaging of tip structure. (c) Assembled 3D tip MEAs with external PCB for interfacing extracellular recording hardware. 18
Figure 2 Schematic representation of the fabrication processes for SU-8 neuroprobe in oblique and cross section views. (a) E-beam evaporation of Al sacrificial layer on a glass substrate, (b) spin-coating and definition of SU-8 neuroprobe pattern, (c) E-beam evaporation of Ti/Au electrode layer, (d) spin-coating and definition of electrode trace and pad by photoresist (PR), (e) etching of unwanted metal using wet etching solution, (f) removal of photoresist via acetone wash, (g) spin-coating and definition of opening via SU-8 patterning, (h) release of complete SU-8 neuroprobe via etching of Al sacrificial layer, and (i) layout of SU-8 neuroprobe with two groups of microelectrode for two different depths of brain regions, i.e. cortex and striatum.... 22
Figure 3 Mechanical analytical model of SU-8 neuroprobe during insertion process 23
Figure 4 Schematic diagrams of the fabrication of MEAs. (a) A 15-µm-thick photosensitive PI film was utilized as the substrate for the deposition of metals. (b) A gold layer (2000 Ǻ) was then deposited after a titanium layer (200 Ǻ) as the adhesion layer above the PI. Mask 1 was used to create the trace of electrodes by wet etching. (c) A gold electrode and pad trace pattern was formed by etched away unwanted metal then followed by removed the photoresist. (d) 20-µm-thick spin-coated PI film was used to encapsulate the electrodes. Mask 2 was then applied to expose microelectrodes and contact pads. (e) MEAs were then baked at 100 °C for 1 hr. The fabricated MEAs has total 60 microelectrodes and each active electrode site has diameter of 50 μm in circle. 28
Figure 5 Schematic diagram of microperfusion OGD system with electrophysiological measurement functionality. Whole measurement system could be easily equipped into inverted microscope for real-time observation of cell behavior. 30
Figure 6 Photos of (a) integrated devices consisting of compartmentalized microfluidic device and microelectrode array; (b) microscopic view of three culture region with twenty microelectrode arrangement; (c) fluorescence imaging of separated neuronal population connected with axons (green: MAP II, red: Smi 312, blue: DAPI). .. 36
Figure 7 Phase-contrast microscopic imaging for observing of morphological difference between 2D and 3D neuronal culture: (a) 2D neuronal network in petri-dish surface, (b) 2D neuronal culture in 3D tip MEAs surface, (c) Matrigel-based 3D neuronal culture inside petri-dish culture, (d) Matrigel –based 3D neuronal culture inside 3D tip MEAs culture.. 42
Figure 8 Cell viability of 2D and 3D neuronal culture during 21 DIVs culture period. The observation time point was selected as following: after 4 hours cell seeding as 0 DIVs, 7 DIVS, 14 DIVs and 21 DIVs, (n=10, *p<0.05). The cell viability was calculated as the number of live cells divided by the sum of live and dead cells 43
Figure 9 Impedimetric measurement results during 2D and 3D neuronal network formation during 21 DIVs culture period..... 44
Figure 10 Typical extracellular recorded spike from in vitro 3D neuronal network after 17 DIVs culture period 45
Figure 11 Spike raster train from in vitro 3D neuronal network after 17 DIVs culture period. 46
Figure 12 SEM images of SU-8 neuroprobe of (a) whole probe structure and (b) one group of microelectrodes with four microelectrodes for electrophysiological recording (circular shape) and one reserved for future integration of electrochemical sensing (rectangular shape). Higher magnification of (c) single recording microelectrode and (d) wire bonding to external PCB for recordings... 47
Figure 13 Mechanical evaluation of SU-8 neuroprobe during insertion process and images acquired during (a) buckling test and (b) bending test... 49
Figure 14 Insertion and retraction behavior of flexible SU-8 neuroprobe during three different samples. The insertion resistance force exhibited different patterns for 0.6% agar brain phantom (solid line), brain with dura and pia (dotted line), and brain with pia only (dashed line). The insertion of neuroprobe was operated at fixed speed of 100 µm/s to around 6 mm in depth. Before retraction at 80 sec, the resistance force dropped to about zero after insertion.... 49
Figure 15 Cytoxicity test of SU-8 neuroprobe. Cortical neurons cultured in culture dish for (a) 7 DIVs and (c) 14 DIVs. Cortical neurons cultured on SU-8 neuroprobe for (b) 7 DIVs and (d) 14 DIVs. (e) Quantification of cell viability for culture and neuroprobe (N=10 for each group).... 51
Figure 16 Extracellular spontaneous action potential of cortical neurons cultured on SU-8 neuroprobe was recorded from 17-DIV cortical neurons, (a). Magnified view of signals recorded from SU-8 neuroprobe can be distinguished from background noise, (b).... 52
Figure 17 Immunohistological staining of tissue reaction around implantation site. Anti-MAPII/GFAP staining around implanted neuroprobe in (a) cortex region and (b) striatum 14 days after implantation (anti-MAPII stained red for neuron marker; anti-GFAP stained green for astrocyte marker).... 53
Figure 18 (a) Electrophysiological recording of neural signals after SU-8 neuroprobe implantation. Two action potential signals extracted from those marked with arrows in (a)with (b) minimum and (c) maximum SNR.... 54
Figure 19 Time-course monitoring results of impedance of cells on the electrode over 7 DIVs (n=4). The curve of cortical neuron represents neurons cultured for 7 DIVs. The cells were deliberately damaged on day 8 via adjustment of osmolarity.... 55
Figure 20 Cell viabilities of control and IGF-1-protected (50 ng/mL and 100 ng/mL) group of rat cortical neurons before OGD, after 30-min of OGD, and after 24 hr of re-oxygenation (re-oxy), (n=4, *p < 0.05). The cell viability was calculated as the number of live cells divided by the sum of live and dead cells.... 57
Figure 21 Normalized JC-1 fluorescence change of normal and IGF-1-protected (50 ng/mL and 100 ng/mL) cortical neurons during 30-min of OGD and 2 hr of re-oxygenation. JC-1 fluorescence was normalized and valinomycin was used to force the MMP to be at the level of depolarization.... 58
Figure 22 Impedimetric monitoring results of normal and IGF-1-protected rat cortical neurons during 30-min of OGD and controls without OGD insult.... 60
Figure 23 Pictures of (a) microscopic view of three culture region with twenty microelectrode arrangement, (b) fluorescence imaging of separated neuronal population connected with axon (green: MAP II, red: Smi 312, blue: DAPI).... 61
Figure 24 The diseased and healthy neuronal population under OA and without treatment. The cytoskeleton alternation visualized as green color by MAP II immunocytochemistry staining for (a) high concentration OA treatment (600 nM), (b) low concentration OA treatment (60 nM).,,.... 63
Figure 25 Disease propagation process during high concentration OA treatment (600 nM). Hp-tau was visualized as green color by pS262 immunocytochemistry staining..... 66
Figure 26 Disease propagation process during low concentration OA treatment (60 nM). Hp-tau was visualized as green color by pS262 immunocytochemistry staining.... 66
Figure 27 Spike number ratio acquired by extracellular recording during two concentration of OA treatment (600 nM, 60 nM) which represented the functional pattern changed during disease propagation, (N = 5, * p < 0.05, ** p < 0.01, *** p < 0.001, **** p < 0.005), The spike number ratio was calculated as the value of each recovery period (75min + 0h, 6h, 24h and 48h) divided by the value of before 75min OA as control value..... 68
Figure 28 Bursts per minute ratio acquired by extracellular recording during two concentration of OA treatment (600 nM, 60 nM) which represented the functional pattern changed during disease propagation, (N = 5, * p < 0.05, ** p < 0.01, *** p < 0.005, **** p < 0.001), The bursts per minute ratio was calculated as the value of each recovery period (75min + 0h, 6h, 24h and 48h) divided by the value of before 75min OA as control value.... 70
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