Using carbon fibre microelectrodes to monitor the oxidative metabolism of blowfly eyes


  • Andrej Meglič
  • Gregor Belušič
  • Gregor Zupančič



blowfly eye, Calliphora vicina – chalky, carbon fibre electrode, PO2 measurement, amperometry


The oxidative metabolism in animal tissues can be conveniently monitored by measuring tissue PO2 with a carbon fibre microelectrode. We have established a recording configuration in a living animal by insertion of a carbon fibre electrode (CFE) into the retina of a blowfly (Calliphora vicina – chalky). The current flowing over an exposed carbon disc at the tip of an insulated carbon fibre with 5 µm diameter is linearly proportional to PO2 when the PO2 was varied between 0 kPa (100% N2) and 100 kPa (100% O2) in the recording chamber. The slight changes in sensitivity of CFE during the recording time were corrected by calibrations
performed at the start and at the end of the experiments. Exposure of the eye to bright light caused a drop in tissue PO2. Hypoxia increased with the stimulation time, reaching a maximum after about 20 s (∆PO2=11.6 kPa). These results are in good agreement with direct measurements of O2 consumption in isolated eyes.


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Original Research Paper

How to Cite

Meglič, A., Belušič, G., & Zupančič, G. (2009). Using carbon fibre microelectrodes to monitor the oxidative metabolism of blowfly eyes. Acta Biologica Slovenica, 52(1), 19-28.

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