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September 1958

Technique for Measuring Heart Potentials Continuously in a Freely Moving Rat

Author Affiliations

Los Angeles

AMA Arch NeurPsych. 1958;80(3):394-395. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1958.02340090130019

It is often desirable to record a physiologic variable continuously without restricting movement. For example, one might wish to know the sequence of heart rate changes demonstrated by an experimental animal during the learning of a maze. Techniques of recording heart potentials in the rat have been reported1,2 but do not allow the animal to move freely during recording. The following technique represents a simple procedure for such continuous recording in a freely moving rat.*

Two metal surgical sutures (Tru clip #904) are used as electrodes. They are clamped bilaterally on the back of the anesthetized animal about 1 in. from the dorsal midline and just above the scapula, so that they are some distance from moving limbs and in loose skin. The clips cause no apparent irritation and will remain intact for two weeks or longer. Although initial work involved shaving the skin before application of the sutures,

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