Navigation Links
Advanced technology reveals activity of single neurons during seizures
Date:3/27/2011

The first study to examine the activity of hundreds of individual human brain cells during seizures has found that seizures begin with extremely diverse neuronal activity, contrary to the classic view that they are characterized by massively synchronized activity. The investigation by Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and Brown University researchers also observed pre-seizure changes in neuronal activity both in the cells where seizures originate and in nearby cells. The report will appear in Nature Neuroscience and is receiving advance online publication.

"Our findings suggest that different groups of neurons play distinct roles at different stages of seizures," says Sydney Cash, MD, PhD, of the MGH Department of Neurology, the paper's senior author. "They also indicate that it may be possible to predict impending seizures, and that clinical interventions to prevent or stop them probably should target those specific groups of neurons."

Epileptic seizures have been reported since ancient times, and today 50 million individuals worldwide are affected; but much remains unknown about how seizures begin, spread and end. Current knowledge about what happens in the brain during seizures largely comes from EEG readings, which reflect the average activity of millions of neurons at a time. This study used a neurotechnology that records the activity of individual brain cells via an implanted sensor the size of a baby aspirin.

The researchers analyzed data gathered from four patients with focal epilepsy seizures that originate in abnormal brain tissues that could not be controlled by medication. The participants had the sensors implanted in the outer layer of brain tissue to localize the abnormal areas prior to surgical removal. The sensors recorded the activity of from dozens to more than a hundred individual neurons over periods of from five to ten days, during which each patient experienced multiple seizures. In some participants, the recordings detected changes in neuronal activity as much as three minutes before a seizure begins and revealed highly diverse neuronal activity as a seizure starts and spreads. The activity becomes more synchronized toward the end of the seizure and almost completely stops when a seizure ends.

"Even though individual patients had different patterns of neural activity leading up to a seizure, in most of them it was possible to detect changes in that activity before the upcoming seizure," says co-lead and corresponding author Wilson Truccolo, PhD, Brown University Department of Neuroscience and an MGH research fellow. "We're still a long way from being able to predict a seizure which could be a crucial advance in treating epilepsy but this paper points a direction forward. For most patients, it is the unpredictable nature of epilepsy that is so debilitating, so just knowing when a seizure is going to happen would improve their quality of life and could someday allow clinicians to stop it before it starts."

Cash adds, "We are using ever more sophisticated methods to handle the large amounts of data we are collecting from patients. Now we are assessing how well we actually can predict seizures using ensembles of single neurons and are continuing to use these advanced recording techniques to unravel the mechanisms that cause human seizures and leveraging this knowledge to make the most of animal models." Cash is an assistant professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School, and Truccolo an assistant professor of Neuroscience (Research) at Brown.


'/>"/>

Contact: Sue McGreevey
smcgreevey@partners.org
617-724-2764
Massachusetts General Hospital
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Racial disparities persist in the diagnosis of advanced breast cancer and colon cancer in the U.S.
2. UH Case Medical Center researchers publish promising findings for advanced cervical cancer
3. Split-course palliative radiotherapy confirmed as effective treatment for advanced NSCLC
4. Drug for advanced kidney cancer shrinks tumors prior to surgery
5. Siemens Awards for Advanced Placement Honor Top U.S. Science and Math Students and Teachers
6. Family members reduce stress in advanced cancer patients with 14 minute massages
7. Accelerated radiation therapy reduces toxicity in patients with advanced head and neck cancers
8. Proton beam therapy shows encouraging long-term outcome for patients with locally advanced sinonasal cancers
9. Castrate-Metastatic Prostate Cancer: Therapeutic Considerations for Advanced Disease
10. AdvancedMD Appoints William Stone Vice President and General Manager of Billing Services Partner Program
11. BOTOX Cosmetic & Wrinkle Filler Specialist Hosts Advanced Training Event at Ageless Beauty in Mountain Home, ID
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:1/21/2017)... ... 21, 2017 , ... "ProDOF is the perfect set of tools for video editors that want ... scene," said Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , Video editors using ... illusion of a DSLR racking focus from one area into the next. ProDOF comes ...
(Date:1/21/2017)... ... January 21, 2017 , ... ... Relations, Dianne Travis-Teague, the electrifying line-up of events for its annual meeting “Coming ... friends, and community. “Coming Home 2017” will be held on Friday January ...
(Date:1/21/2017)... ... January 21, 2017 , ... In the United States, ... experience the freedom of recovery, they often feel shame for having struggled with an ... disorder (PTSD). In the workshop, “Rising Strong in Life After an Eating Disorder” -- ...
(Date:1/20/2017)... , ... January 20, 2017 , ... A new partnership ... items they no longer use or need, from clothes to couches to dressers and ... items and take them to the nearest Goodwill donation center through February 28th. ...
(Date:1/20/2017)... FL (PRWEB) , ... January 20, 2017 , ... Doctor ... announced it attended the January ECRM trade show to continue the marketing and distribution ... vitamin C supplement, known for providing 400 percent better absorption than traditional vitamin C ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:1/19/2017)... NEW YORK , Jan. 19, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... reach USD 233.7 billion by 2025, according to ... The market is anticipated to be predominantly driven ... companies, resulting into the large-scale production of new ... widen the influx of drugs at an unprecedented ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... Conference Call and Webcast to Follow Vanda Pharmaceuticals Inc. ... results for the fourth quarter of 2016 on Wednesday, February 15, ... ... PM ET on Wednesday, February 15, 2017, during which management will ... other corporate activities. To participate in the conference call, please dial ...
(Date:1/19/2017)... 19, 2017  Stealth BioTherapeutics Inc. ( Stealth ), ... dysfunction, today announced new additions to its senior leadership ... Medical Officer, and Daniel Geffken as interim ... Jim Carr , Pharm.D. has been promoted to Chief ... to welcome Doug and Daniel to our management team, ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: