Many labs now use two-photon uncaging of glutamate to study synaptic plasticity
In collaboration with Haruo Kasai's lab in Tokyo, we developed two-photon uncaging of glutamate at single spine heads in acutely isolated brain slices. Since our initial contribution to this area in 2001, the labs of Magee, Sabatini, Svoboda, Yuste, Hunganir, Lisman, Oertner, Beck, Zakharenko, Carter, MacVicar, Saggau, Jahr, Häusser, Yasuda, Tonegawa, Rózsa, Surmeier, Ashby, Malinow, Silver, Lynch/Gall, Zito, Lovinger, etc. have all published using this technique. This contribution is a good example of the sort of science we try to do, one that makes a real difference.
We continue to work on the development of new caged transmitters for two-photon photolysis. for example:
Olson, J.P., Kwon, H-B., Takasaki, K.T., Chiu, C.Q., Higley, M.J., Sabatini, B.L. and Ellis-Davies G.C.R. (2013) Optically selective two-photon uncaging of glutamate at 900 nm. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 135, 5954 - 5957.
This is still one arena in which traditional uncaging is better than ChR2, namely subcellular activation of native membrane receptors.