Characteristic distribution of interictal brain electrical activity in idiopathic generalized epilepsy

B. Clemens, Mónika Bessenyei, Pálma Piros, M. Tóth, L. Séress, I. Kondákor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: To demonstrate the anatomic localization of the cortical sources of the interictal EEG activity in human idiopathic generalized epilepsy (IGE). Methods: Multiple cortical and hippocampal sources of the interictal spontaneous EEG activity were investigated by low-resolution electromagnetic tomography in 15 untreated IGE patients and in 15 healthy controls. EEG activity (current density) in four frequency bands (delta: 1.5-3.5 Hz, theta: 3.5-7.5 Hz, alpha: 7.5-12.5 Hz, beta: 12.5-25.0 Hz) was computed for 2,397 voxels. Voxel-by-voxel group comparison was done between the patient and the control group. Voxels with p <0.01 differences (between the two groups) were correlated with cortical anatomy. Results: Areas of significantly increased or decreased activity were characterized by their anatomical extension and the frequency bands involved. Five areas of bilaterally increased activity were found: rostral part of the prefrontal cortex (delta, theta); posterior part of the insula (delta); hippocampus and mediobasal temporal cortex (all frequency bands); medial parietooccipital cortex (theta, alpha, beta); dorsal and polar parts of the occipital cortex (alpha). Bilaterally decreased delta, theta, alpha activity was found in the majority of the frontal and anterior parietal cortex on the lateral surface, and in parts of the medial surface of the hemispheres. The area of decreased beta activity was less extensive. The right lateral and laterobasal temporal cortex showed decreased delta, theta, alpha, and beta activity, while its left counterpart only showed decreased delta and alpha activity in a limited part of this area. Conclusions: (1) Pathological interictal EEG activity is not evenly distributed across the cortex in IGE. The prefrontal area of increased activity corresponds to the area that is essential in the buildup of the ictal spike-wave paroxysms (absence seizures). The existence of the posterior "center of gravity" of increased EEG activity in IGE was confirmed. The frontal area of decreased activity might be related to the cognitive deficit described in IGE patients. (2) Increased activity in a lot of ontogenetically older areas (including the hippocampi) and decreased activity in the majority of the isocortex is a peculiar pattern that argues for a developmental hypothesis for IGE.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)941-949
Number of pages9
JournalEpilepsia
Volume48
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2007

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Electroencephalography
Brain
Temporal Lobe
Hippocampus
Hypergravity
Absence Epilepsy
Occipital Lobe
Somatosensory Cortex
Electromagnetic Phenomena
Neocortex
Prefrontal Cortex
Human Activities
Idiopathic Generalized Epilepsy
Anatomy
Stroke
Tomography
Control Groups

Keywords

  • EEG
  • Epilepsy
  • Idiopathic generalized
  • LORETA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neuroscience(all)

Cite this

Characteristic distribution of interictal brain electrical activity in idiopathic generalized epilepsy. / Clemens, B.; Bessenyei, Mónika; Piros, Pálma; Tóth, M.; Séress, L.; Kondákor, I.

In: Epilepsia, Vol. 48, No. 5, 05.2007, p. 941-949.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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AU - Clemens, B.

AU - Bessenyei, Mónika

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AU - Kondákor, I.

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N2 - Purpose: To demonstrate the anatomic localization of the cortical sources of the interictal EEG activity in human idiopathic generalized epilepsy (IGE). Methods: Multiple cortical and hippocampal sources of the interictal spontaneous EEG activity were investigated by low-resolution electromagnetic tomography in 15 untreated IGE patients and in 15 healthy controls. EEG activity (current density) in four frequency bands (delta: 1.5-3.5 Hz, theta: 3.5-7.5 Hz, alpha: 7.5-12.5 Hz, beta: 12.5-25.0 Hz) was computed for 2,397 voxels. Voxel-by-voxel group comparison was done between the patient and the control group. Voxels with p <0.01 differences (between the two groups) were correlated with cortical anatomy. Results: Areas of significantly increased or decreased activity were characterized by their anatomical extension and the frequency bands involved. Five areas of bilaterally increased activity were found: rostral part of the prefrontal cortex (delta, theta); posterior part of the insula (delta); hippocampus and mediobasal temporal cortex (all frequency bands); medial parietooccipital cortex (theta, alpha, beta); dorsal and polar parts of the occipital cortex (alpha). Bilaterally decreased delta, theta, alpha activity was found in the majority of the frontal and anterior parietal cortex on the lateral surface, and in parts of the medial surface of the hemispheres. The area of decreased beta activity was less extensive. The right lateral and laterobasal temporal cortex showed decreased delta, theta, alpha, and beta activity, while its left counterpart only showed decreased delta and alpha activity in a limited part of this area. Conclusions: (1) Pathological interictal EEG activity is not evenly distributed across the cortex in IGE. The prefrontal area of increased activity corresponds to the area that is essential in the buildup of the ictal spike-wave paroxysms (absence seizures). The existence of the posterior "center of gravity" of increased EEG activity in IGE was confirmed. The frontal area of decreased activity might be related to the cognitive deficit described in IGE patients. (2) Increased activity in a lot of ontogenetically older areas (including the hippocampi) and decreased activity in the majority of the isocortex is a peculiar pattern that argues for a developmental hypothesis for IGE.

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