Science Update

Enhanced Burst-Suppression and Disruption of Local Field Potential Synchrony in a Mouse Model of Focal Cortical Dysplasia Exhibiting Spike-Wave Seizures

Publication Details

Featured Authors

Anthony J. Williams

Qian-Quan Sun

Journal Name
Frontier Neural Circuits
Experiment Type
Animal Model
Brain Region
Cortex Somatosensory
Brain Signal
Single Unit
Brain Signal
Product Category
  • SmartBox
  • Penetrating Electrode
  • Instrumentation
Focal cortical dysplasias (FCDs) are a common cause of brain seizures and are often associated with intractable epilepsy. Here we evaluated aberrant brain neurophysiology in an in vivo mouse model of FCD induced by neonatal freeze lesions (FLs) to the right cortical hemisphere (near S1). Linear multi-electrode arrays were used to record extracellular potentials from cortical and subcortical brain regions near the FL in anesthetized mice (5–13 months old) followed by 24 h cortical electroencephalogram (EEG) recordings. Results indicated that FL animals exhibit a high prevalence of spontaneous spike-wave discharges (SWDs), predominately during sleep (EEG), and an increase in the incidence of hyper-excitable burst/suppression activity under general anesthesia (extracellular recordings, 0.5%–3.0% isoflurane). Brief periods of burst activity in the local field potential (LFP) typically presented as an arrhythmic pattern of increased theta-alpha spectral peaks (4–12 Hz) on a background of low-amplitude delta activity (1–4 Hz), were associated with an increase in spontaneous spiking of cortical neurons, and were highly synchronized in control animals across recording sites in both cortical and subcortical layers (average cross-correlation values ranging from +0.73 to +1.0) with minimal phase shift between electrodes. However, in FL animals, cortical vs. subcortical burst activity was strongly out of phase with significantly lower cross-correlation values compared to controls (average values of −0.1 to +0.5, P < 0.05 between groups). In particular, a marked reduction in the level of synchronous burst activity was observed, the closer the recording electrodes were to the malformation (Pearson’s Correlation = 0.525, P < 0.05). In a subset of FL animals (3/9), burst activity also included a spike or spike-wave pattern similar to the SWDs observed in unanesthetized animals. In summary, neonatal FLs increased the hyperexcitable pattern of burst activity induced by anesthesia and disrupted field potential synchrony between cortical and subcortical brain regions near the site of the cortical malformation. Monitoring the altered electrophysiology of burst activity under general anesthesia with multi-dimensional micro-electrode arrays may serve to define distinct neurophysiological biomarkers of epileptogenesis in human brain and improve techniques for surgical resection of epileptogenic malformed brain tissue.
Williams et al., "Enhanced Burst-Suppression and Disruption of Local Field Potential Synchrony in a Mouse Model of Focal Cortical Dysplasia Exhibiting Spike-Wave Seizures". Neural Circuits 10, November 2016.
Publication Date
United States
Brown Universityd