Automated in vivo patch clamp

Patch clamping is an electrophysiological method used to measure cell dynamics. The setup involves attaching a pulled-glass pipette filled with conductive solution to a cell membrane and recording the currents that pass through that patch of membrane. The technique is notoriously difficult in cultured neurons or brain slices, and even more difficult in live animals (ultimately, the most appropriate system to study). Several scientists have recently developed an algorithm to automate the process, thereby reducing the skill level and time commitment required to perform patch clamp experiments in vivo.