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    Articles

    EPC10 Single Single Patch Clamp Amplifier

    HEKA is pleased to release the newest member in its family of patch clamp amplifiers, the EPC 10. Continuing the tradition of providing the world’s best electrophysiology amplifier, the EPC 10 has all of the features of its predecessor, the EPC 9; but it goes much further in offering many improvements that have been implemented according to the wishes, suggestions and proposals of our customers.

    EPC10 Single Single Patch Clamp Amplifier

    The EPC 10 is fully integrated with the new LIH 1600 AD/DA interfaceThe advanced integration of the EPC 10 with the A/D D/A interface and software minimizes total recording noise, eliminates compatibility problems, saves on additional equipment expenses and set-up and training times. The built-in interface is connected to the PCI-1600 computer interface card via fiber optic data cables. This connection provides superb optical isolation, virtually eliminating ground loops and increasing the distance between the computer and the amplifier by up to 5 meters. The ITC 1600 has eight analog inputs, four analog outputs, sixteen digital inputs and sixteen digital output channels all sampling synchronously. Additionally, there are two "telegraphing" channels for monitoring external devices.

    Low Frequency Voltage Clamp (LFVC)

    In current clamp (CClamp) mode, the membrane potential (Vm) is measured and used to compute a current waveform which is fed back into the cell. As a result, slow voltage drift and other artificial voltage-dependent conductances are controlled and adjusted to a fixed value. This negates any readjustment of the holding current while conducting CClamp experiments.

    True CClamp in fast mode

    A new design of the pre-amplifier allows to perform "True CClamp" experiments. In CClamp mode, the headstage acts as a voltage follower circuit, which guarantees very fast and accurate membrane potential recordings. Similar to a classical microelectrode amplifier, the cell voltage is measured on a very high input resistance and C-fast compensation is no longer necessary.

    A new slim-line headstage design with plug-in connector

    Using novel components and a new arrangement of the parts on a multi layer board, we drastically reduced the dimensions of the headstage. The slim shape of the completely new designed headstage allows optimal access to your cells. The connection to the pipette holder is achieved via a stable BNC connector.

    Digital Trigger In-/Outputs

    The EPC 10 is equipped with 3 TTL trigger outputs and 1 trigger input on the front panel. There are 16 additional digital outputs and 16 digital inputs available at the rear panel of the EPC 10. The digital outputs can be used to control external devices like perfusion systems or video imaging systems. Two telegraphing inputs on the rear panel can be used to combine the EPC 10 amplifier with external devices, e.g. telegraphing gain amplifiers.

    Like the EPC 9, the versatility of the EPC 10 stems from it’s adjustment and control at the software level. Leak currents, capacitances, and series resistance can instantly be neutralized automatically while you still retain the possibility of full manual control of the amplifier. Voltage- and CurrentClamp experimental protocols are easily automated; not only ensuring simplicity, great speed and accuracy but also providing enormous flexibility for the integration of extensions such as photometric and fluorescence measurements.

    Adapter plates for various micromanipulators are available from HEKA.

    The EPC 10 is a complete data acquisition system, which can be used with HEKA's PATCHMASTER, PULSE or TIDA software. PATCHMASTER supports all new features of the EPC 10, such as: - low frequency voltage clamp - extended current clamp range to maximal 100 nA -independent stimulation of all 4 D/A channels and digital outputs - acquisition of all 8 A/D channels and digital inputs The EPC 10 can be used in the same way as the EPC 9 amplifier when controlled with PULSE or TIDA. The versatility of the EPC 10 makes it useful in many research areas besides the classical fields like single-channel and whole-cell measurements.

    It is also an ideal instrument for loose-patch experiments, capacitance measurements (monitoring of endo- and exocytosis), recordings from plant cells and organelles, and studying Reconstituted ion channels in artificial membranes. The integration of the EPC 10 amplifier with the ITC-1600 A/D D/A effectively eliminates all interferences that in conventional systems often arise from ground loops. Furthermore, full digital control by a computer running our dedicated software provides automatic leak and capacitance neutralization at every stage of the experiment. One major benefit of this well-compensated measuring arrangement is the minimization of noise. The EPC 10 Patch Clamp Amplifier combined with a computer and PATCHMASTER, PULSE and TIDA software is equivalent to a fully equipped setup, which includes a patch clamp amplifier, a digital storage oscilloscope, a variable analog filter, a sophisticated pulse generator, and a full featured data acquisition and analysis system.

    Features:
    •Full computer control (Mac and Windows based)
    •Can be used with PatchMaster on Windows operating systems, on MacOS 9 and Mac OS X.With PULSE and TIDA on Windows operating systems.
    •Automatic self-test and calibration
    •Automatic Capacitance neutralization
    •Capacitance tracking
    •Automatic leak subtraction
    •Optimized, built-in interface
    •Integration with the LIH 1600 AD/DA interface with fiber optic connection to the host computer
    •Ultra slim-line headstage design with improved noise performance
    •True Current Clamp capabilities
    •Low Frequency Voltage Clamp
    •Digital outputs & telegraphing inputs
    •Integration of hardware and software eliminates compatibility problems on Windows operating systems.
    •True noise measurements from 100 Hz to 15 kHz
    •Suitable for single-channel and whole-cell measurements, loose patch experiments, capacitance measurements, recordings from plant cells and organelles, and studying reconstituted channels in artificial membranes
    •100-130 V AC or 200-260 V AC switchable