ATLAS Neuro also fabricates peripheral components such as drives, fixtures, insertion tools, probe holders, electrode interface boards (EIB) and customized interfacing solutions for non-standardized experimental setups. Those are compatible for our own passive probe arrays but also for other passive or active probe arrays such as the Neuropixels probe.
Our probe arrays are compatible with a large variety of commercially available headstages using dedicated connector types and pinouts. Our adapters and EIBs ensure the correct pinout connectivity for each type of headstage. When using custom amplifiers and data acquisition systems we will find a solution to connect our probe technology onto your system. We do recommend chronic probe implantation by using our vacuum probe inserter tool.
ATLAS neuro designs and fabricates drives and re-usable fixtures for commercially available probe arrays such as Neuropixels. There is an adjustable miro drive, a reusable single fixture and dual fixture available for the NP1.0 probe and NP2.0 probe . ATLAS can do the probe alignment and probe assembly as a service but in case you want to do this yourself we can provide an alignment and assembly holder with manual.
The picture on the right shows the main 3 variants of the reusable Neuropixels 1.0 fixtures. The only disposable piece would be the skull cap. Depending on your weight budget you can choose for a drivable fixture (6.8 gram) in which the probe is adjustable or a single fixture (3.7 gram), in which the probe is fixed. Note that the weight of the drives include the NP1.0 probe and headstage pcb. The fixture kit comes with an assembly holder and retriever unit that slides easily over the fixture and separate the the body of the fixture from the skull cap. We also have a stereotactic holder that holds the fixture with probe during surgery. The height of the single fixture is about 30 mm. The spacing between the 2 probe shafts of the dual fixture can range from 3 mm till 7.5 mm.
We fabricate micro drives for 16-channel and 32 channel probe arrays. The array can contain one or several shafts and maximum probe length of 10mm. The drive is compatible with Omnetics connectors or Precidip. The total travel is 8mm with 250µm per turn. The 32-channel reusable drive has a weight of 2 gram and with cap 2.4 gram.
Our chronic probe array can be implanted using an inserter tool that can be clamped into the stereotactic frame. The nozzle of the tool contains a recess which holds the flexible cable in place. The connector can be clamped onto the inserter which also enables to record during implantation.
In case you can't use vacuum, the probe can also be temporary fixed in place using polyethylene glycol (PEG). The PEG can easily be dissolved in saline solution.
Our electrode interface boards (EIBs) are in general equipped with cost-effective zero-insertion-force (ZIF) connectors interfacing with our chronic probe arrays. In contrast, the connection to headstages is typically achieved by Omnetics connectors designed for a large number of mating cycles. Due to the non-permanent – nonetheless reliable – interface between EIB and chronic probe using the ZIF connectors, EIBs by ATLAS can be re-used even though the chronic probe cannot be released from the dental acrylic. This lowers the unit price per chronic electrode array.
ATLAS provides EIBs for a broad range of commercially available headstages and we can help with custom-solutions for your home-build headstages or other type of adapter boards.