Many agents do not cross the blood-brain barrier sufficiently to evaluate their effects on the brain without delivering them locally. Cerebral injection is one local delivery method, but it can be challenging to deliver an effective dose in a physiologically-compatible volume. In addition, the agent may not remain in the target location long enough to see an effect. For many compounds, local infusion directly into the brain is the only way to generate reliable data. ALZET pumps have been used in hundreds of published neuroscience studies to infuse agents, from growth factors to siRNA to psychoactive drugs and more, to the central nervous system.

The ALZET Brain Infusion Kits are designed specifically for use with ALZET pumps for targeted delivery to the central nervous system. They can be used in two ways:

  1. Infusion into the cerebral ventricles exposes a wide variety of brain regions to the infusate via the cerebrospinal fluid which bathes the brain.
  2. Direct microperfusion of discrete brain structures results in localized distribution of infusate in the target tissue.

Each ALZET Brain Infusion Kit includes materials for 10 brain infusions:

  • 10 Brain Infusion Cannulae
  • 10 Vinyl Catheter Tubes
  • 40 Depth-Adjustment Spacers
  • 1 Instruction Sheet

Three brain cannulae designs are available to meet most common CNS applications mice and rats

Specifications and Comparison of Brain Kits

Note: all materials in the Kits meet US Pharmacopoeia (USP) Class VI standards for the biocompatibility of medical plastics. Kit materials have been exposed to a sterilizing dose of radiation from a 60Co source.

ALZET Brain Infusion Kit Features

Two specialized cannula designs

The original Brain Infusion Kit 1 has a taller base with a narrower diameter and grooves which are ideal for anchoring sutures in certain applications. The Brain Infusion Kits 2 and 3 feature a wide base pedestal which have been designed for greater stability, and may obviate the need for anchor screws. The Brain Kits 2 and 3 have a lower profile pedestal, which facilitates closure of the skin after placement.

Targets lateral ventricles

Without modification, Brain Kits 1 & 2 will penetrate 5 mm below the surface of the skull. When affixed to the skull in the stereotaxically correct location, this will put the tip of the cannula in the region of the cerebral ventricles of a 250-300 g rat. Brain Kit 3 will penetrate 3 mm below the skull surface, which is appropriate for targeting the lateral ventricles in an adult mouse.

Easily customized

to target different brain regions or adjust for differences in animal size. Uniquely designed depth adjustment spacers allow the depth of the cannula tip within the brain to be adjusted in 0.5 mm increments. Note that the cannula can easily be cut to target more superficial structures.

Minimizes local trauma

Fine gauge stainless steel cannula minimizes trauma to the brain during cannula placement. (Brain Kits 1 & 2 are 28 gauge. Brain Kit 3 is 30 gauge)


with all ALZET pumps models. (Pumps and kits are sold separately.)


All materials in the Kits meet U.S. Pharmacopoeia (USP) Class VI standards for the biocompatibility of medical plastics.

Flexible vinyl tubing

that is well-suited for brain infusion.

Cannula Design Diagrams