Instrumentation of Near-term Fetal Sheep for Multivariate Chronic Non-anesthetized Recordings

Patrick Burns, Hai Lun Liu, Shikha Kuthiala, Gilles Fecteau, André Desrochers, Lucien Daniel Durosier, Mingju Cao, Martin G Frasch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The chronically instrumented pregnant sheep has been used as a model of human fetal development and responses to pathophysiologic stimuli such as endotoxins, bacteria, umbilical cord occlusions, hypoxia and various pharmacological treatments. The life-saving clinical practices of glucocorticoid treatment in fetuses at risk of premature birth and the therapeutic hypothermia have been developed in this model. This is due to the unique amenability of the non-anesthetized fetal sheep to the surgical placement and maintenance of catheters and electrodes, allowing repetitive blood sampling, substance injection, recording of bioelectrical activity, application of electric stimulation and in vivo organ imaging. Here we describe the surgical instrumentation procedure required to achieve a stable chronically instrumented non-anesthetized fetal sheep model including characterization of the post-operative recovery from blood gas, metabolic and inflammation standpoints.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e52581
JournalJournal of Visualized Experiments (JoVE)
Issue number105
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes


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