The Slime Mould Collective

An international network of/for intelligent organisms

I'm trying to put together a couple of different activity packs for schools based around physarum - a basic which would be chemo/photo and other-taxis and something a bit more fancy.

Has anyone enough experience with the setups to walk me through what I'd need and how to set in a similar way to a neuro patch clamp rig?

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Are you thinking something like these guys are doing:

Yeh but those rigs are way too expensive for something to set up for schools. I'm looking at doing something similar using the Soundcard oscilloscope ideas that are around on the internet -  a few tens of millivolts seems to be about the right range and means I could in principle just stick a couple of wires in a microphone port. I just need to find time to sit down and try it out.....

Sounds like a great idea.

I'll have to keep that in mind for the future. There's a clever way to measure intracellular pressures using the resistance of a micropipette needle inserted into the cytoplasm. However, buying the device costs 20K, and the original design of the device is pretty complicated. The soundcard oscilloscope idea -- with extensive modifications and new control software -- might bring it down closer to my budget.

Speaking of, for your activity packs, have you considered anything involving cellular biomechanics? A lot of older studies on the physics of cytoplasm and cell movement were done with Physarum because it could be studied much more easily with such a large cell. If you're interested I could find a few references pretty easily.


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