Wireless and precise stimulation of deep brain structures could have important applications to study intact brain circuits and treat neurological disorders. Herein, we report that magnetoelectric nanoparticles (MENs) can be guided to a targeted brain region to stimulate brain activity with a magnetic field. We demonstrated the nanoparticles’ capability to reliably evoke fast neuronal responses in cortical slices ex vivo. After fluorescently labeled MENs were intravenously injected and delivered to a targeted brain region by applying a magnetic field gradient, a magnetic field of low intensity (350–450 Oe) applied to the mouse head reliably evoked cortical activities, as revealed by two-photon and mesoscopic imaging of calcium signals and by an increased number of c-Fos expressing cells after stimulation. Neither brain delivery of MENs nor the magnetic stimulation caused significant increases in astrocytes and microglia. Thus, MENs could enable a non-invasive and contactless deep brain stimulation without the need of genetic manipulation.
- Calcium imaging
- Noninvasive brain stimulation
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology
- Pharmacology (medical)