Electrophysiological Properties of Human Brain Neuronal Tissue

Project Details

Almost all electrophysiological observations of neural normal function, drug responsiveness and abnormal states such as epilepsy in have been performed on rodent brain tissue. It is becoming clear, however, that human tissue has significant differences from rodent brain.

This project presents an almost unique opportunity to study human brain tissue at the single neuron and network level by utilising tissue taken in the course of neurosurgical procedures. Individual neurons are prepared by enzymatic dissociation, and recorded with patch electrodes. Network properties are recorded using intact brain slice.

For this project, the main aims are to identify the properties of voltage gated ion channels, in particular sodium and potassium currents. An area of special interest is the HERG channel subtype, which is likely to play an important role in brain function, but almost completely uncharacterised in any neural system.



  • Dr Lucy Palmer (Florey)
  • Dr Gui Silva (ANU)

Research Opportunities

This research project is available to Honours students to join as part of their thesis.
Please contact the Research Group Leader to discuss your options.

Research Group

Neural Dynamics Laboratory

Faculty Research Themes


School Research Themes

Neuroscience & Psychiatry

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact the research group leader.

Department / Centre



Royal Melbourne Hospital

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