The goal of this project is to create a system to conduct research with the assistance of a 'High Throughput Multifunction System for Neurophysiology of Behavior'. This Phase II application to the Omnibus Solicitation is based on the Phase I for PA-08-001 that was funded by NIAAA 5R43AA020676-02. The advanced system will provide capabilities for many other Behavioral Neurophysiology research activity related to the missions of NIAAA, NIMH, NINDS, NIDA, and NIA. Multiple new technologies will be integrated to achieve a high performance high throughput system so that single operator can conduct multiple experiments. The main focus is to design and assemble an advanced data acquisition and control module for multiple continuous long duration studies of animals living in an experimental chamber. A rotating platform with tethered instrumentation will follow the movements of the animal. The purpose of the arrangement is to avoid the need for multiple swivel connection that limits the connections of different types that can be made with a moving animal. This arrangement will allow multiple electrical, optical and fluid connections to be made over long times. Installation of laser light sources and syringe infusion pumps on the rotating platform is a novel design. An advance data acquisition electronics module for recording and stimulation from a large number of channels will consist of an Altera Arria V GX FPGA with a PCIe connection to a PC motherboard. The multiple functions will allow continuous analog signal recording spike waveform capture, simultaneously electrochemical detection from many channels. The module also includes extensive capabilities for multiple imager support. The device is re-purposed from a DARPA that supported 'Gigapixel'camera project to enable parallel processing from hundreds of imager devices. The unique design will enable assembly of very large system configurations 10,000 or more parallel channels for future neuroscience as related technology matures. The compact unit will be installed above an experimental chamber on a unit that will rotate by a motor system triggered by movement of the rodent. The rotating system has been designed for transfer of power and control. High speed wireless, optical, or digital communication from the rotating unit will allow data and control signals to pass from each experimental chamber to a host computer data acquisition service A further aim is to advance a universal real time state machine for control of behavioral chambers and multiple devices for sensing and stimulation. Remote control client software will be created for control and analysis of data. An additional aim is to conduct evaluation studies of drugs related to therapy for multiple applications in behavioral neurophysiology related to development of therapeutic agents. Neuron population activity and multiple carbon fibers will employ fast scan electrochemistry to detect dopamine release transient in multiple brain regions with rats housed continuously over thirty days while testing responses. Microdialysis probes, multiple precision syringe pumps, camera imaging, and a colorimetric system will be adapted for repeated measurement of tissue alcohol levels in rats ingesting ethanol over time with intermittent access. Efficiency of microdialysis research will be enhanced by allowing use of multiple probes along with an improved automated collection system. A group of Collaborators to validate will provide critical and essential tests and evaluation for research applications in alcohol and drug addiction, schizophrenia, aging brain, sleep and brain states, pain modulation, and seizure prediction. The overall goal of the introduction of the interrelated enhancements is to reduce the required labor and instrumentation to achieve high efficiency for many types of behavioral research conducted simultaneously in multiple chambers, while employing a family of sensors and technologies that will be adapted for use with the rotating system. By achieving a high level of integration and efficiency the system aims to result in a System for Development of Therapeutic Drugs and Procedures'

Public Health Relevance

This project will develop an extremely efficient and cost effective system of instruments to control and test a wide range of behavior of animals while measuring brain activity and responses to stimulation by drugs. The system includes a number of enhancements of both electronic instrumentation and the extensive software needed to enable high throughput studies. Such a system is needed to determine the actions of drugs that can ameliorate addictive drinking of alcohol and the abuse of other harmful drugs. Many therapeutic drugs and procedures can be evaluated more effectively. The system will useful for efficient studies related to drug abuse, alcoholism, and improvement of memory, cognition in mental disease, and function in aging brain.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
Small Business Innovation Research Grants (SBIR) - Phase II (R44)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1-ETTN-M (11))
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Liu, Qi-Ying
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Biographics, Inc.
Winston Salem
United States
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