cell attached patch

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puffin's picture
cell attached patch

In textbooks describing patch clamp techniques, cell attached mode is commonly described as a method to monitor single channel activity. In contrast, some studies utilize cell attached mode to monitor action potentials or synaptic potentials.

Is it the difference in recording conditions (for example pipette solutions or amplifier setting) that allows recording of whole cell vs single channel activity?

Thanks in advance for any insight.

Fraser Moss
Fraser Moss's picture
In cell attached mode you are

In cell attached mode you are able elicit action potentials (and record them) just by activating the single channel within the patch.

see this paper :

J W Lynch and P H Barry
Biophys J. 1989 April; 55(4): 755–768.
Action potentials initiated by single channels opening in a small neuron (rat olfactory receptor).


Spontaneous action potentials are typically not detected unless the channel within the patch is opened and each channel opening, regardless of the duration, only initiates a single action potential.