The beginning of scientific innovations usually starts by formulating a fundamental question, “can light be used to control a cell?” The original story of optogenetics is inundated with multiple investigators’ research whose impacts have crossed whole continents. Fundamentally, optogenetics is the use of light (opto-) to stimulate encoded proteins (-genetic). Its infancy began by manipulating a single cell but has evolved well beyond deciphering neural circuits to even controlling signaling pathways. In this chapter, we first discuss the roots of optogenetics, framing it in the context of current scientific exploration, followed by the biological mechanism of optogenetics used in the context of neural interface engineering. Finally, we discuss the application of optoelectronic interfaces and project current optogenetic research into future applications.
KeywordsOptogenetics Opsins Optical Neural Interfaces
This work was supported by the National Science Foundation of USA through Grant # 1749701.
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