Adam Fitchett, Jason D. Fabbri, Yaoxing Hu, Justin Cange, Karolina Kozeniauskaite, Kenneth Shepard, David S. Holder, and Kirill Aristovich, “Imaging Circuit Activity in the Rat Brain with Fast Neural EIT and Depth Arrays,” 2023 11th International IEEE/EMBS Conference on Neural Engineering (NER), Baltimore, MD, USA, 2023, pp. 1-4.

Few techniques are specialized for neuroscience at the “mesoscopic” level of neural circuits. Fast neural electrical impedance tomography (fnEIT) is a novel imaging technique that offers affordability, portability, and high spatial (∼100 μm) and temporal (~1 ms) resolution. fnEIT with depth arrays offers the opportunity to study the dynamics of circuits in the brains of animal models. However, current depth array geometries are not optimized for this imaging modality. They feature small, closely packed electrodes with high impedance that do not provide sufficient SNR for high resolution EIT image reconstruction. They also have a highly limited range. It is necessary to develop depth arrays suitable for fnEIT and evaluate their performance in a representative setting for circuit neuroscience. In this study, we optimized the geometry of depth arrays for fnEIT, and then investigated the prospects of imaging thalamocortical circuit activity in the rat brain. Optimization was consistent with the hypothesis that small, closely spaced electrodes were not suitable for fnEIT. In vivo experiments with the optimized geometry then showed that fnEIT can image thalamocortical circuit activity at a high enough resolution to see the activity propagating from specific thalamic nuclei to specific regions of the somatosensory cortex. This bodes well for fnEIT’s potential as a technique for circuit neuroscience.