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Thermal block of action potentials is primarily due to voltage-dependent potassium currents: a modeling study

dc.contributor.authorGanguly, Mohit
dc.contributor.authorJenkins, Michael W.
dc.contributor.authorJansen, E. Duco
dc.contributor.authorChiel, Hillel J.
dc.identifier.citationMohit Ganguly et al 2019 J. Neural Eng. 16 036020en_US
dc.description.abstractObjective. Thermal block of action potential conduction using infrared lasers is a new modality for manipulating neural activity. It could be used for analysis of the nervous system and for therapeutic applications. We sought to understand the mechanisms of thermal block. Approach. To analyze the mechanisms of thermal block, we studied both the original Hodgkin/Huxley model, and a version modified to more accurately match experimental data on thermal responses in the squid giant axon. Main results. Both the original and modified models suggested that thermal block, especially at higher temperatures, is primarily due to a depolarization-activated hyperpolarization as increased temperature leads to faster activation of voltage-gated potassium ion channels. The minimum length needed to block an axon scaled with the square root of the axon's diameter. Significance. The results suggest that voltage-dependent potassium ion channels play a major role in thermal block, and that relatively short lengths of axon could be thermally manipulated to selectively block fine, unmyelinated axons, such as C fibers, that carry pain and other sensory information.en_US
dc.description.sponsorshipWe thank Dr Kendrick M Shaw (Massachusetts General Hospital), Dr Ted Carnevale (Yale University), and Alex Williams (Stanford University) for initial guidance in setting up the simulations and Python scripting. We thank Dr Joshua Rosenthal (Marine Biological Laboratories) with help with understanding the axial resistance measurements. We also thank Dr John P Wikswo (Vanderbilt University) and three anonymous reviewers for helpful comments and suggestions on an earlier draft of the manuscript. We gratefully acknowledge support from NIH (grants R56-NS087249 and R56-NS094651) as well as DOD/AFOSR (grants FA 9550-14-1-0303 and FA 9550-17-1-0374).en_US
dc.publisherJournal of Neural Engineeringen_US
dc.rightsOriginal content from this work may be used under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 licence. Any further distribution of this work must maintain attribution to the author(s) and the title of the work, journal citation and DOI.
dc.subjectthermal blocken_US
dc.subjectinfrared neural inhibitionen_US
dc.subjectcomputational modelen_US
dc.subjectunmyelinated axonsen_US
dc.subjectvoltage-gated potassium channelsen_US
dc.subjectsquid giant axonen_US
dc.titleThermal block of action potentials is primarily due to voltage-dependent potassium currents: a modeling studyen_US

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