Research Tools and Techniques

We have access to the following major equipment through the Molecular Neurosciences Facility for Gulf War Illness and Epilepsy Research Program

Behavioral: The facility has multiple behavioral assessment equipment for identifying symptoms of depression, anxiety, and cognitive deficits in rats. These include the Barnes Maze, and Morris Water Maze Test, Object recognition/ location tests, the Forced Swim test, Elevated Plus Maze, Light-Dark box, Sucrose Preference test , and Open Field test. All the behavioral assays are equipped with video monitoring capabilities and animal tracking software (Noldus Ethovision XT 10.2). 

Calcium imaging: This setup includes an Olympus IMT-W fluorescent microscopy system equipped with an Hammamatsu ORCA-ER high-speed digital CCD camera. Ratio images are acquired using a Sutter wheel and a Fura filter cube controlled by Metafluor 7.6 software (Molecular Devices).

Electrophysiology: We have 5 electrophysiological set ups (rigs) equipped with Axopatch and Multiclamp amplifiers, digitizers, other supporting equipment, and computer systems running PClamp software.

Histology: This facility includes Leica vibrotome sectioning system (VT 1200) that is equipped with a chilling unit for sectioning hippocampal slices. For obtaining brain sections, the facility includes a Leica cryostat (CM 3050S).

Molecular biology: This facility is equipped with all the required hardware and software for protein isolation, estimation, western blotting, film-developer and software for protein quantitation. The facility also houses PCR machine, ultracentrifuges, nanodrop, and a Beckman TL-100 air ultracentrifuge for handling small samples.

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