The Past, Present, and Future of Real-Time Control in Cellular Electrophysiology

Jennifer A. Bauer, Katherine M. Lambert, John A. White
2014 IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering  
For over 60 years, real-time control has been an important technique in the study of excitable cells. Two such control-based technologies are reviewed here. First, voltage-clamp methods revolutionized the study of excitable cells. In this family of techniques, membrane potential is controlled, allowing one to parameterize a powerful class of models that describe the voltagecurrent relationship of cell membranes simply, flexibly, and accurately. Second, dynamic-clamp methods allow the addition
more » ... new, 'virtual' membrane mechanisms to living cells. Dynamic clamp allows researchers unprecedented ways of testing computationally based hypotheses in biological preparations. The review ends with predictions of how control-based technologies will be improved and adapted for new uses in the near future. II. Voltage-Clamp Techniques Although the field of neural electrophysiology is nearly 500 years old [1], it was not until the middle of the 20 th century that the mechanistic underpinnings of neuronal excitability were determined. The technological driver of these advances was the voltage-clamp method, an early and extremely influential form of real-time control in electrophysiology. In this section, we briefly review the voltage-clamp technique as a necessary introduction to several key topics. More extensive coverage of this material can be found elsewhere [2]- [7] .
doi:10.1109/tbme.2014.2314619 pmid:24710815 pmcid:PMC4086259 fatcat:yspnvyau4jetlhwxfdx4vvsksy