WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind., Feb. 12, 2016 — Pharmaceutical development company Bioanalytical Systems Inc. (Basi) has awarded three of its Raturn Swivel-Free Sampling Systems to researchers who will integrate in vivo optogenetic techniques with data collection techniques for full response profiles of animals.
The recipients are the Robert Gross Laboratory at Emory University, the David Holtzmann Laboratory at the Washington University School of Medicine, and the Michael Fanselow and Kate Wassum Laboratories at the University of California, Los Angeles.
Upon review of the grant proposals, Basi determined the recipients based on their groundbreaking and forward-thinking approach to integrate the Raturn system and expand the possibilities of collecting multiple data streams from a single animal. The data collection techniques include microdialysis, biosensor detection, electrophysiological measurements and behavioral readouts. The system uses a proprietary movement-response mechanism designed to facilitate multiple data collection connections, whether electrical or fluid, to a fully conscious, freely-moving creature.
Researchers also have the opportunity to simultaneously collect neurochemistry measurements with the Culex Automated Blood Sampling system, combining in-vivo optogenetics with the Raturn to produce a fully integrative data profile, optimal for investigators to customize the type of information they need and fully understand pharmacological response. Exploring the actual neurotransmitter and other biomarker release quantitatively will provide better insights into understanding the brain circuitry, behavior, disease process and drug targets.
“Optogenetics is a neuroscience technique that utilizes light optics to modulate real-time response within a specific group of cells — typically, neurons,” said Srini Jayaraman, principle investigator for Basi’s drug discovery services. “This neuromodulation is driven by optical fibers skillfully implanted within a specific brain region, which are used to elicit both electrical and chemical responses. In order to fully quantify these reactions, researchers need the ability to simultaneously capture multiple streams of data.”
Currently, optogenetic techniques are used regularly to harvest information for pharmaceutical and other research with the use of an electrical commutator. However, the data necessary to formulate a fully integrative response profile using this traditional technique is limited due to the inability of an electrical commutator to facilitate collection of bio fluids. This incompatibility is the result of physical limitations when attaching more than one connection to an awake, freely-moving animal, which causes twisting and damage to the animal and equipment. Commutators can facilitate multiple electrical connections, such as optogenetics fibers and ECGs or EKGs, to an awake animal using a pivot point where all electrical lines converge. In contrast, liquid swivels function to connect multiple biofluid lines, such as microdialysis and blood sampling, to an awake animal using a pivot point where all fluid lines meet. The Raturn system replaces electrical commutator and liquid swivels.
Basi is a pharmaceutical development company providing contract research services and monitoring instruments to the world's leading drug development companies and medical research organizations, focusing on developing innovative services and products that increase efficiency and reduce the cost of taking new drugs to market.