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Single-Cell Recording is a technique used in research to observe changes in voltage or current in a neuron.
In this technique an animal, usually anesthetized, has a microelectrode inserted into its skull and into a neuron in the area of the brain that is of interest. The electrode measures the changes in charge as the neuron reaches its action potential.
This process is usually concurrent with some sort of stimuli. For example, a probe could be put into a single neuron in a specific area of the visual cortex of an animal. The animal is then shown a series of lights in different orientations on a dark screen. Whatever orientation of light is being shown at the time the electrode reads a change in voltage is what orientation corresponds to that area of the visual cortex.
Kremers, J. (5/6/2003). Division of Experimental Ophthalmology: Electrophysiological Laboratory. Retrieved December 5, 2006, from http://www.uak.medizin.uni-tuebingen.de/jan/index.html.