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To cope with the growing needs in research towards the understanding of cellular function and network dynamics, advanced micro-electrode arrays (MEAs) based on integrated complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) circuits have been increasingly reported. Although such arrays contain a large number of sensors for recording and/or stimulation, the size of the electrodes on these chips are often larger than a typical mammalian cell. Therefore, true single-cell recording and stimulation remains challenging. Single-cell resolution can be obtained by decreasing the size of the electrodes, which inherently increases the characteristic impedance and noise. Here, we present an array of 16 384 active sensors monolithically integrated on chip, realized in 0.18 μm CMOS technology for recording and stimulation of individual cells. Successful recording of electrical activity of cardiac cells with the chip, validated with intracellular whole-cell patch clamp recordings are presented, illustrating single-cell readout capability. Further, by applying a single-electrode stimulation protocol, we could pace individual cardiac cells, demonstrating single-cell addressability. This novel electrode array could help pave the way towards solving complex interactions of mammalian cellular networks.
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Name: Lab on a chip
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