3D Multi-Electrode Arrays

Type: Electrophysiology / Probes,

Keywords: Flexible multi-electrode array (MEA), Electromyography electrodes, 3D MEA device, Electromyogram (EMG) recording, Neurophysiology, Motor system

Micro-scale EMG arrays for recording single- and multi-unit activity

Micro-scale EMG arrays for recording single- and multi-unit activity from muscle populations, and algorithms for analyzing the resulting data.

*By developing advanced nanofabrication tools for manufacturing ultra-dense, ultra-flexible electrode arrays, we are creating a new class of electromyography (EMG) electrodes capable of recording large populations of single-unit recordings from muscle fibers during behavior.

*Developing devices for songbirds, mice, rats, frogs, and nonhuman primates.

*Ensure flexibility and biocompatibility of the fabricated three-dimensional (3D) multi-electrode array (MEA) devices.

*Flexible 3D MEA for high signal-to-noise (SNR) in vivo electromyogram recordings.

*Developed microscale, flexible, high-density electrode arrays that sit on the surface of individual muscles to record EMG signals.

*The electrode exposures ranged from 25 to 300 μm in diameter and were separated by as little as 25 μm.

*Flexible 3D MEAs capable of high SNR EMG recordings from the muscles of multiple species.

*Able to acquire high-quality EMG recordings from 32 locations simultaneously during quiet respiration in eight male Bengalese finches.

*NR measurements from the fabricated 3D electrode show up to a 7x improvement as compared to the 2D MEAs.

*Height of the 3D electrodes can easily be modulated by changing the film thickness of the spin coated photoresist.

*3D MEAs yielded higher SNR measurements over a longer duration of time as compared to a 2D array.

*Important for detecting and analyzing smaller units which are otherwise lost in noise.

*Some of the improvement may have been due to better electrical isolation as excess liquid dried around the recording site.

*With better signal fidelity, individual units can be identified more reliably and for longer periods of time, which will allow more advanced analysis techniques that can be used to understand how nervous systems control behavior.

*High specificity and impedance of individual electrodes. *Able to extract single-motor unit data in some cases.

*Although Expiratory Muscle (EXP) is made up of three sheet-like overlapping muscles [musculus (m.) obliquus externus abdominis, m. obliquus internus, and m. transversus abdominis], we presume that we are recording motor units from the most superficial muscle: m. obliquus externus abdominis.

*Because all three muscles have similar functional roles involving contraction during respiration, recording a motor unit from any of these muscles would not affect our interpretation.

Flexible Multielectrode Arrays With 2-D and 3-D Contacts for In Vivo Electromyography Recording. Zia M, Chung B, Sober S, Bakir MS. IEEE Trans Compon Packaging Manuf Technol. 2020. PMID: 32280561. DOI: 10.1109/tcpmt.2019.2963556.


Fabrication and Characterization of 3D Multi-Electrode Array on Flexible Substrate for In Vivo EMG Recording from Expiratory Muscle of Songbird. Zia M, Chung B, Sober SJ, Bakir MS. Tech Dig Int Electron Devices Meet. 2018. PMID: 30846889. doi: 10.1109/IEDM.2018.8614503.


Motor Control by Precisely Timed Spike Patterns. Srivastava KH, Holmes CM, Vellema M, Pack AR, Elemans CP, Nemenman I, Sober SJ. Proc Natl Acad Sci 2017. PMID: 28100491. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1611734114.








Sam Sober, Associate Professor


Emory University



McKnight Foundation Technological Innovations in Neuroscience Award, NIH grant R01NS109237, the Simons Foundation