In the ERC-AdG BACKUP project we would like to exploit optogenetics to write engrams in neuronal cultures in-vitro. ISLAND aims at developing an integrated and intelligent platform which should allow to write and read engrams in neuronal cultures.
The reading part of the setup will be done by sampling the electrophysiological activity of the culture using microelectrode array (MEA) technology which is highly time - and space - resolved. The writing part will be executed by optogenetic techniques using an optical setup allowing spatially-patterned light such as digital light processor (DLP) or integrated photonic circuit (IPC). The core of ISLAND will be to integrate those two parts in a closed-loop, by developing processing and control units. The processing unit will collect the electrical signals from MEA as a feedback of the neuronal activity and will map the neurons in the network according to their electrophysiological activity. The control system will then activate the corresponding pattern of stimuli in the optical setup according to the network’s map and the assignment.
ISLAND is a strong multidisciplinary project combining neuroscience, electronics and photonics with the usage of Deep-Learning techniques.