Skip to main content
Open Access Publications from the University of California


UC San Francisco Previously Published Works bannerUCSF

Thermal constraints on in vivo optogenetic manipulations.

  • Author(s): Owen, Scott F
  • Liu, Max H
  • Kreitzer, Anatol C
  • et al.

A key assumption of optogenetics is that light only affects opsin-expressing neurons. However, illumination invariably heats tissue, and many physiological processes are temperature-sensitive. Commonly used illumination protocols increased the temperature by 0.2-2 °C and suppressed spiking in multiple brain regions. In the striatum, light delivery activated an inwardly rectifying potassium conductance and biased rotational behavior. Thus, careful consideration of light-delivery parameters is required, as even modest intracranial heating can confound interpretation of optogenetic experiments.

Many UC-authored scholarly publications are freely available on this site because of the UC's open access policies. Let us know how this access is important for you.

Main Content
Current View