Imaging sodium in axons and dendrites

William Ross, Ilya Fleidervish, Nechama Lasser-Ross

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


This protocol describes a one-photon method to detect the time course and the spatial distribution of intracellular sodium ion concentrations [Na+]i, which result from action potentials and synaptic activity in different regions of neurons in brain slices. The one-photon technique has been applied to several different cell types and can likely be applied to other neurons in brain slices, particularly those that are relatively flat. Imaging of [Na+]i changes is much less common than imaging of [Ca2+]i changes, in part because typical signals are much smaller and more difficult to detect. However, with careful experiments, accurate and interesting results can be obtained. In this protocol, a cell is loaded with an indicator that responds to Na+, the cell is stimulated, and the spatial and temporal characteristics of the fluorescence changes are recorded with an appropriate detector or camera.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)433-437
Number of pages5
JournalCold Spring Harbor Protocols
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 May 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


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