Dry-contact microelectrode membranes for wireless detection of electrical phenotypes in neonatal mouse hearts
Continuous monitoring of aberrant electrical rhythms during heart injury and repair requires prolonged data acquisition. We hereby developed a wearable microelectrode membrane that could be adherent to the chest of neonatal mice for in situ wireless recording of electrocardiogram (ECG) signals. The novel dry-contact membrane with a meshed parylene-C pad adjacent to the microelectrodes and the expandable meandrous strips allowed for varying size of the neonates. The performance was evaluated at the system level; specifically, the ECG signals (μV) acquired from the microelectrodes underwent two-stage amplification, band-pass filtering, and optical data transmission by an infrared Light Emitting Diode (LED) to the data-receiving unit. The circuitry was prototyped on a printed circuit board (PCB), consuming less than 300 μW, and was completely powered by an inductive coupling link. Distinct P waves, QRS complexes, and T waves of ECG signals were demonstrated from the non-pharmacologically sedated neonates at ~600 beats per minutes. Thus, we demonstrate the feasibility of both real-time and wireless monitoring cardiac rhythms in a neonatal mouse (17–20 mm and <1 g) via dry-contact microelectrode membrane; thus, providing a basis for diagnosing aberrant electrical conduction in animal models of cardiac injury and repair.