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Introducing a New Holographic Photostimulation Solution

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Developed by Scientifica, the HoloStim-3D is a compact module that seamlessly integrates with the HyperScope multiphoton imaging system, providing a turnkey, fully integrated Spatial Light Modulator (SLM) based photostimulation solution. By shaping laser beams to generate defined light patterns, with individual points projected onto specific cells or cell structures in a biological sample, holographic photostimulation enables the active interrogation of large 3D networks.

This all-optical solution enables simultaneous imaging and photostimulation of hundreds of individual cells in 3D, to clearly identify the role of neural subtypes and individual neurons in brain circuits and behaviour. Cells and subcellular structures in deep brain tissue can be targeted, generating high-quality results.

“Spatial light modulation in multiphoton microscopy has unleashed new, unprecedented methods of photostimulation capabilities in biological tissue,” says Dr. Kelly Sakaki, Systems Engineer at Scientifica. “The Holostim-3D combines the best of spatial light modulation and multiphoton technology, while allowing our customers to drive rapid and high-throughput photostimulation using the latest optogenetics tools.”

With its industry-leading resolution, cell bodies and subcellular structures can be specifically targeted with less off-target activation than other systems on the market, allowing cleaner, more accurate data to be generated. Larger neural networks can be interrogated due to the large 3D field-of-view of the HoloStim-3D. Such large volume network interrogation will enable novel insights into the roles of brain cells and circuits in behaviour.

“The Scientifica HoloStim-3D enables holographic photostimulation over a large field of view combined with substantial power throughput, enabling precise targeting of user-selected groups of cells across large areas. The optical design of the HyperScope enables excellent spatial resolution throughout both the photostimulation and high-speed imaging fields of view,” explained Drs. Adam Packer and Robert Lees, academic collaborators from the University of Oxford.

“The module was easy to use with critical optical elements, such as the half-wave plate for polarisation control and zero order block, integrated in easily accessible places within the module. Also, the ability to combine photostimulation and imaging of any wavelength allows for versatility and extensibility as opsin and indicator technology develops yet further over the coming years. Having used this photostimulation system personally in my laboratory, I found it to be an outstanding addition to our arsenal of tools for interrogating neural circuits.”

The design of the HyperScope and HoloStim-3D allows different imaging and stimulation wavelengths to freely combined, for excitation and imaging of target cells expressing different opsins. Fast switching of stimulation patterns means neuronal firing can be more closely mimicked.

Full integration of the HoloStim-3D with globally recognised ScanImage software makes adopting this technology easier than ever-before, making the HoloStim-3D an excellent choice for researchers who want to start experimenting straight away.