Awake Rodent Research Platform (ARRP)

ARRP is part of the Helsinki In Vivo Animal Imaging (HAIP), one of the life science research infrastructures of HiLIFE (Helsinki Institute of Life Science). ARRP provides cutting-edge approaches and services for optical imaging and electrophysiology in both anesthetized and awake behaving mice. These approaches allow a unique combination of molecular, cellular, behavioral and circuit-level neuroscience research.

Reservations via 

In vivo brain microscopic imaging

These high-precision imaging techniques can be combined with behavioral tasks in an awake behaving mouse head-fixed using Mobile HomeCage (Neurotar), an air-lifted floating platform that resembles a home-cage familiar to laboratory mice.

Two-photon microscopy

Two-photon microscopy is a unique microscopic imaging technique that allows reaching deep regions of the brain (down to 850 µm from the surface of the cranial window) non-invasively. When applied to head-fixed behaving mice, two-photon microscopy can be used to study brain signaling and structure simultaneously with sensory stimulation and behavioral readouts.

Devices: Olympus FV1000MPE (head-fixed awake or anesthetized mice) and Femtonics Femto-Smart (head-fixed awake or anesthetized mice).

Optical Imaging

Intrinsic signal optical imaging (ISOI) is a relatively high spatial resolution imaging technique, which measures cortical reflectance change due to hemodynamic response to examine the temporal resolution of the hemodynamic signal.

Device: IOS (head-fixed anesthetized mice)

Invigilo Imaging

Invigilo is a turn-key solution for multi-channel wide-field optical imaging in the brain of awake mice. Invigilo facilitates simultaneous imaging and behavioral observation via integration of optical components with locomotion tracking and automated stimuli delivery under a master-software.

Device: Neurotar Invigilo (head-fixed awake or anesthetized mice)


nVoke is a miniaturized head-mounted microscope that integrates simultaneous calcium imaging with optogenetic manipulation, empowering scientists to causally link neural activity within brain circuits to behavior. The essence of optogenetics is introducing light-activated recombinant ion channels such as channelrhodopsin (ChR2) or halorhodopsin (NpHR) into excitable cells. Light activation of these molecules leads to an influx of ions which induces neurons to turn on or off selectively.

Device: Inscopix nVoke (head-mounted for awake mice)

Functional ultrasound imaging

(NOTE: available from November 2020)

Functional ultrasound (fUS) imaging uses ultra-high sensitivity power Doppler sequences to estimate the cerebral blood volume (CBV) in small vessels and detect hemodynamic events such as dilation and vasoconstriction with high temporal and spatial resolution. fUS allows studying the regional selectivity of non-vasoactive drugs and establish essential PK/PD parameters such as dose-response relationships in a non-invasive manner.

Device: Iconeus One (head-fixed awake or anesthetized mice)


The ARRP research infrastructure provides cutting-edge approaches for electrophysiological recordings combined with optogenetics and behavioral readouts.

Setup 1. Single unit and LFP recordings, 32-Channel Electrocorticography (ECoG)

Neuronexus probes yielding 256 channels from four probes. Recordings can be performed in head-fixed awake and freely moving mice using Mobile HomeCage or in anesthetize mice.

Setup 2. LFP and patch clamp recordings

HEKA/Neuronexus LFP and Patch-clamp recordings (head-fixed awake or anesthetized mice)

Setup 3. Single unit and LFP recordings, 256-Channel ECoG

Upcoming spring 2021. New setup aimed for human-rodent translational research.

Neuropixel probes each allowing recordings from 384 cites and two 256-channel ECoGs. This setup can be used in awake head-fixed mice running on a treadmill.  Recordings can be combined with a visual task. 

Femtonics Femto-Smart (head-fixed awake or anesthetized mice)1.2.	Wide-field imaging and optogeneticsOptical Imaging IOS (head-fixed anesthetized mice)Neurotar Invigilo (head-fixed awake or anesthetized mice) Inscopix nVoke (head-mounted for awake mice)Iconeus One (head-fixed awake or anesthetized mice)