Cortex-wide neural interfacing via transparent polymer skulls

Leila Ghanbari, Russell E Carter, Mathew L. Rynes, Judith Dominguez, Gang Chen, Anant Naik, Jia Hu, Md Abdul Kader Sagar, Lenora Haltom, Nahom Mossazghi, Madelyn M. Gray, Sarah L. West, Kevin W. Eliceiri, Timothy J Ebner, Suhasa Bangalore Kodandaramaiah

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations


Neural computations occurring simultaneously in multiple cerebral cortical regions are critical for mediating behaviors. Progress has been made in understanding how neural activity in specific cortical regions contributes to behavior. However, there is a lack of tools that allow simultaneous monitoring and perturbing neural activity from multiple cortical regions. We engineered ‘See-Shells’—digitally designed, morphologically realistic, transparent polymer skulls that allow long-term (>300 days) optical access to 45 mm 2 of the dorsal cerebral cortex in the mouse. We demonstrate the ability to perform mesoscopic imaging, as well as cellular and subcellular resolution two-photon imaging of neural structures up to 600 µm deep. See-Shells allow calcium imaging from multiple, non-contiguous regions across the cortex. Perforated See-Shells enable introducing penetrating neural probes to perturb or record neural activity simultaneously with whole cortex imaging. See-Shells are constructed using common desktop fabrication tools, providing a powerful tool for investigating brain structure and function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1500
JournalNature communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019


PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Cite this

Ghanbari, L., Carter, R. E., Rynes, M. L., Dominguez, J., Chen, G., Naik, A., Hu, J., Sagar, M. A. K., Haltom, L., Mossazghi, N., Gray, M. M., West, S. L., Eliceiri, K. W., Ebner, T. J., & Bangalore Kodandaramaiah, S. (2019). Cortex-wide neural interfacing via transparent polymer skulls. Nature communications, 10(1), [1500].