Partially isolated cortex ("undercut") is an animal model of posttraumatic epileptogenesis. The surgical procedure involves cutting through the sensorimotor cortex and the underneath white matter (undercut) so that a specific region of the cerebral cortex is largely isolated from the neighboring cortex and subcortical regions. After a latency of two or more weeks following the surgery, epileptiform discharges can be recorded in brain slices from rodents; and electrical or behavior seizures can be observed in vivo from other species such as cat and monkey. This well established animal model is efficient to generate and mimics several important characteristics of traumatic brain injury. However, it is technically challenging attempting to make precise cortical lesions in the small rodent brain with a free hand. Based on the procedure initially established in Dr. David Prince's lab at the Stanford University, here we present an improved technique to perform a surgery for the preparation of this model in mice and rats. We demonstrate how to make a simple surgical device and use it to gain a better control of cutting depth and angle to generate more precise and consistent results. The device is easy to make, and the procedure is quick to learn. The generation of this animal model provides an efficient system for study on the mechanisms of posttraumatic epileptogenesis.
- Issue 55
- Traumatic brain injury
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Chemical Engineering(all)
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)