My First Day on the Rig

Last Friday I made my first attempt at using one of the primary pieces of lab equipment I will be using in my research. A rig is a setup that includes a microscope, an electrode manipulator, both mounted on a special table. There is also a lot of tubing that feeds oxygen and artificial cerebrospinal fluid (aCSF) to the small dish that the brain slice is in underneath the microscope. The electrode manipulator is used to move the pipette over minuscule distances and place it next to target cells in the brain slice. Here's a picture I found online that looks like it's similar to my rig.

Although I didn't have a brain slice under the microscope, I did learn how to get the aCSF flowing through the system, how to manipulate the electrode, how to find it under the microscope, and how to move it while keeping track of it with the microscope. I didn't even cause too much damage. It was a preliminary, but good, step for someone who is focusing most of their time on school work outside of the lab.

Posted October 6th, 2010 in Career, Neuroscience.