Assessment of GaN chips for culturing cerebellar granule neurons
In this work, the behaviors of cerebellar granule neurons prepared from 7-day-old Wistar rats on gallium nitride (GaN) were investigated. We believe that this is the first time that the GaN has been used as a substrate for neuron cultures to examine its effect on cell response in vitro. The GaN surface structure and its relationship with cells were examined by atomic force microscopy (AFM), metallography microscopy, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) release and Western blot analysis. GaN is a so-called III–V compound semiconductor material with a wide bandgap and a relatively high bandgap voltage. Compared with silicon used for most neural chips, neurons seeded on GaN were able to form an extensive neuritic network and expressed very high levels of GAP-43 coincident with the neurite outgrowth. Therefore, the GaN structure may spatially mediate cellular response that can promote neuronal cell attachment, differentiation and neuritic growth. The favorable biocompatibility characteristics of GaN can be used to measure electric signals from networks of neuronal cells in culture to make it a possible candidate for use in a microelectrode array.
Journal: Biomaterials - Volume 27, Issue 18, June 2006, Pages 3361–3367