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Journal of Neuroscience Methods, 29 (1989) 93-106 93 Research Papers

Summary: Journal of Neuroscience Methods, 29 (1989) 93-106 93
NSM 00963
Research Papers
A cryogenic device for reversibly blocking transmission
through small regions of the spinal cord white matter
A. Vania Apkarian, Charles J. Hodge Jr., Robert J. Martin and Richard T. Stevens
Department of Neurosurgery, SUNY Health Science Center, Syracuse, NY 13210 (U.S.A.)
(Received 15 March 1988)
(Revised 9 February 1989)
(Accepted 11 February 1989)
Key words: Cold block; Spinal cord funiculus; Spinal cord transmission
A simple cryogenic device is described. This device is capable of cooling neural tissue in contact with the probe and maintaining
the tissue at the desired temperature for extended periods of time. The cold probe can thereby reversibly block neural transmission
through small portions of the spinal cord white matter. Interruption of axonal transmission is achieved by placing the tip of the
device in contact with the exposed surface of the spinal cord and cooling the tip of the probe to -1 to +2C. The investigator
monitors the tip temperature and adjusts the pump rate to maintain a constant tip temperature. The cross-sectional area under the
probe where effective transmission block is achieved is about 1.5 mm2 which approximates the size of a single funiculus in the cat
thoracic spinal cord. The cryogenic device was constructed for less than $700. The properties of this device were studied in
physiologic experiments in cats. This device reversibly, selectively and repeatedly blocked the ascending mass action potential in the


Source: Apkarian, A. Vania - Department of Physiology, Northwestern University


Collections: Biology and Medicine