Spatiotemporal dynamics between interictal epileptiform discharges and ripples during associative memory processing
We describe the spatiotemporal course of cortical high-gamma activity, hippocampal ripple activity and interictal epileptiform discharges during an associative memory task in 15 epilepsy patients undergoing invasive EEG. Successful encoding trials manifested significantly greater high-gamma activity in hippocampus and frontal regions. Successful cued recall trials manifested sustained high-gamma activity in hippocampus compared to failed responses. Hippocampal ripple rates were greater during successful encoding and retrieval trials. Interictal epileptiform discharges during encoding were associated with 15% decreased odds of remembering in hippocampus (95% confidence interval 6-23%). Hippocampal interictal epileptiform discharges during retrieval predicted 25% decreased odds of remembering (15-33%). Odds of remembering were reduced by 25-52% if interictal epileptiform discharges occurred during the 500-2000-ms window of encoding or by 41% during retrieval. During encoding and retrieval, hippocampal interictal epileptiform discharges were followed by a transient decrease in ripple rate. We hypothesize that interictal epileptiform discharges impair associative memory in a regionally and temporally specific manner by decreasing physiological hippocampal ripples necessary for effective encoding and recall. Because dynamic memory impairment arises from pathological interictal epileptiform discharge events competing with physiological ripples, interictal epileptiform discharges represent a promising therapeutic target for memory remediation in patients with epilepsy.
Learning hierarchical sequence representations across human cortex and hippocampus
Sensory input arrives in continuous sequences that humans experience as segmented units, e.g., words and events. The brain's ability to discover regularities is called statistical learning. Structure can be represented at multiple levels, including transitional probabilities, ordinal position, and identity of units. To investigate sequence encoding in cortex and hippocampus, we recorded from intracranial electrodes in human subjects as they were exposed to auditory and visual sequences containing temporal regularities. We find neural tracking of regularities within minutes, with characteristic profiles across brain areas. Early processing tracked lower-level features (e.g., syllables) and learned units (e.g., words), while later processing tracked only learned units. Learning rapidly shaped neural representations, with a gradient of complexity from early brain areas encoding transitional probability, to associative regions and hippocampus encoding ordinal position and identity of units. These findings indicate the existence of multiple, parallel computational systems for sequence learning across hierarchically organized cortico-hippocampal circuits.
Time-dependent transformations of memory representations differ along the long axis of the hippocampus
Research has shown that sleep is beneficial for the long-term retention of memories. According to theories of memory consolidation, memories are gradually reorganized, becoming supported by widespread, distributed cortical networks, particularly during postencoding periods of sleep. However, the effects of sleep on the organization of memories in the hippocampus itself remains less clear. In a 3-d study, participants encoded separate lists of word-image pairs differing in their opportunity for sleep-dependent consolidation. Pairs were initially studied either before or after an overnight sleep period, and were then restudied in a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scan session. We used multivariate pattern similarity analyses to examine fine-grained effects of consolidation on memory representations in the hippocampus. We provide evidence for a dissociation along the long axis of the hippocampus that emerges with consolidation, such that representational patterns for object-word memories initially formed prior to sleep become differentiated in anterior hippocampus and more similar, or overlapping, in posterior hippocampus. Differentiation in anterior hippocampal representations correlated with subsequent behavioral performance. Furthermore, representational overlap in posterior hippocampus correlated with the duration of intervening slow wave sleep. Together, these results demonstrate that sleep-dependent consolidation promotes the reorganization of memory traces along the long axis of the hippocampus.
Religious conversion in an older male with longstanding epilepsy [Case Report]
Religious experiences in epilepsy patients have provoked much interest with suggestions that hyperreligiosity is associated with temporal lobe seizures. Extreme varieties of religious behavior may be more frequent in epilepsy patients during ictal activity or during post-ictal psychotic episodes. We report a 75Â year-old man with epilepsy who developed a progressive decline in cognition and behavior following a religious conversion 15Â years earlier. He subsequently developed religious delusions of increasing severity and symptoms of Capgras syndrome. Brain imaging revealed bilateral posterior cortical atrophy, chronic right parieto-occipital encephalomalacia, and right mesial temporal sclerosis. Electroencephalograms and neuropsychological testing revealed initial right temporal lobe abnormalities followed by progressive frontal and bilateral dysfunction. The case highlights how a history of seizures, superimposed on sensory deprivation and a progressive impairment of right posterior and bilateral anterior brain function, may have contributed to religious conversion, which was followed by dementia and delusions involving religious content.
Effects of hippocampal interictal discharge timing, duration, and spatial extent on list learning
Interictal epileptiform discharges (IEDs) can impair memory. The properties of IEDs most detrimental to memory, however, are undefined. We studied the impact of temporal and spatial characteristics of IEDs on list learning. Subjects completed a memory task during intracranial EEG recordings including hippocampal depth and temporal neocortical subdural electrodes. Subjects viewed a series of objects, and after a distracting task, recalled the objects from the list. The impacts of IED presence, duration, and propagation to neocortex during encoding of individual stimuli were assessed. The effects of IED total number and duration during maintenance and recall periods on delayed recall performance were also determined. The influence of IEDs during recall was further investigated by comparing the likelihood of IEDs preceding correctly recalled items vs. periods of no verbal response. Across 6 subjects, we analyzed 28 hippocampal and 139 lateral temporal contacts. Recall performance was poor, with a median of 17.2% correct responses (range 10.4-21.9%). Interictal epileptiform discharges during encoding, maintenance, and recall did not significantly impact task performance, and there was no significant difference between the likelihood of IEDs during correct recall vs. periods of no response. No significant effects of discharge duration during encoding, maintenance, or recall were observed. Interictal epileptiform discharges with spread to lateral temporal cortex during encoding did not adversely impact recall. A post hoc analysis refining model assumptions indicated a negative impact of IED count during the maintenance period, but otherwise confirmed the above results. Our findings suggest no major effect of hippocampal IEDs on list learning, but study limitations, such as baseline hippocampal dysfunction, should be considered. The impact of IEDs during the maintenance period may be a focus of future research.
Is formal scoring better than just looking? A comparison of subjective and objective scoring methods of the Rey Complex Figure Test for lateralizing temporal lobe epilepsy
OBJECTIVE/UNASSIGNED:Findings highlight concerns regarding the usefulness of the RCFT in TLE lateralization, regardless of scoring approach.
Sounds of seizures
PURPOSE/OBJECTIVE:A phase I feasibility study to determine the accuracy of identifying seizures based on audio recordings. METHODS:We systematically generated 166 audio clips of 30 s duration from 83 patients admitted to an epilepsy monitoring unit between 1/2015 and 12/2016, with one clip during a seizure period and one clip during a non-seizure control period for each patient. Five epileptologists performed a blinded review of the audio clips and rated whether a seizure occurred or not, and indicated the confidence level (low or high) of their rating. The accuracy of individual and consensus ratings were calculated. RESULTS:The overall performance of the consensus rating between the five epileptologists showed a positive predictive value (PPV) of 0.91 and a negative predictive value (NPV) of 0.66. The performance improved when confidence was high (PPV of 0.96, NPV of 0.70). The agreement between the epileptologists was moderate with a kappa of 0.584. Hyperkinetic (PPV 0.92, NPV 0.86) and tonic-clonic (PPV and NPV 1.00) seizures were most accurately identified. Seizures with automatisms only and non-motor seizures could not be accurately identified. Specific seizure-related sounds associated with accurate identification included disordered breathing (PPV and NPV 1.00), rhythmic sounds (PPV 0.93, NPV 0.80), and ictal vocalizations (PPV 1.00, NPV 0.97). CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:This phase I feasibility study shows that epileptologists are able to accurately identify certain seizure types from audio recordings when the seizures produce sounds. This provides guidance for the development of audio-based seizure detection devices and demonstrate which seizure types could potentially be detected.
Mesial temporal resection following long-term ambulatory intracranial EEG monitoring with a direct brain-responsive neurostimulation system
OBJECTIVE:To describe seizure outcomes in patients with medically refractory epilepsy who had evidence of bilateral mesial temporal lobe (MTL) seizure onsets and underwent MTL resection based on chronic ambulatory intracranial EEG (ICEEG) data from a direct brain-responsive neurostimulatorÂ (RNS) system. METHODS:We retrospectively identified all patients at 17 epilepsy centers with MTL epilepsy who were treated with the RNS System using bilateral MTL leads, and in whom an MTL resection was subsequently performed. Presumed lateralization based on routine presurgical approaches was compared to lateralization determined by RNS System chronic ambulatory ICEEG recordings. The primary outcome was frequency of disabling seizures at last 3-month follow-up after MTL resection compared to seizure frequency 3Â months before MTL resection. RESULTS:We identified 157 patients treated with the RNS System with bilateral MTL leads due to presumed bitemporal epilepsy. Twenty-five patients (16%) subsequently had an MTL resection informed by chronic ambulatory ICEEG (meanÂ =Â 42Â months ICEEG); follow-up was available for 24 patients. After MTL resection, the median reduction in disabling seizures at last follow-up was 100% (mean: 94%; range: 50%-100%). Nine patients (38%) had exclusively unilateral electrographic seizures recorded by chronic ambulatory ICEEG and all were seizure-free at last follow-up after MTL resection; eight of nine continued RNS System treatment. Fifteen patients (62%) had bilateral MTL electrographic seizures, had an MTL resection on the more active side, continued RNS System treatment, and achieved a median clinical seizure reduction of 100% (mean: 90%; range: 50%-100%) at last follow-up, with eight of fifteen seizure-free. For those with more than 1Â year of follow-up (NÂ =Â 21), 15 patients (71%) were seizure-free during the most recent year, including all eight patients with unilateral onsets and 7 of 13 patients (54%) with bilateral onsets. SIGNIFICANCE/CONCLUSIONS:Chronic ambulatory ICEEG data provide information about lateralization of MTL seizures and can identify additional patients who may benefit from MTL resection.
Sleep spindles promote the restructuring of memory representations in ventromedial prefrontal cortex through enhanced hippocampal-cortical functional connectivity
Memory consolidation is hypothesized to involve the distribution and restructuring of memory representations across hippocampal and cortical regions. Theories suggest that, through extended hippocampal-cortical interactions, cortical ensembles come to represent more integrated, or overlapping, memory traces that prioritize commonalities across related memories. Sleep processes, particularly fast sleep spindles, are thought to support consolidation, but evidence for this relationship has been mostly limited to memory retention benefits. Whether fast spindles provide a mechanism for neural changes hypothesized to support consolidation, including the strengthening of hippocampal-cortical networks and integration across memory representations, remains unclear, as does the specificity of regions involved. Using functional connectivity analyses of human fMRI data (both sexes), we show that fast spindle density during overnight sleep is related to enhanced hippocampal-cortical functional connectivity the next day, when re-studying information learned before sleep. Spindle density modulated connectivity in distinct hippocampal-cortical networks depending on the category of the consolidated stimuli. Specifically, spindle density correlated with functional connectivity between anterior hippocampus and ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC) for object-word pairs, and posterior hippocampus and posteromedial cortex (PMC) for scene-word pairs. Using multivariate pattern analyses, we also show fast spindle density during post-learning sleep is associated with greater pattern similarity, or representational overlap, across individual object-word memories in vmPFC the next day. Further, the relationship between fast spindle density and representational overlap in vmPFC was mediated by the degree of anterior hippocampal-vmPFC functional connectivity. Together, these results suggest fast spindles support the network distribution of memory traces, potentially restructuring memory representations in vmPFC.SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENTHow new experiences are transformed into long-term memories remains a fundamental question for neuroscience research. Theories suggest that memories are stabilized as they are reorganized in the brain, a process thought to be supported by sleep oscillations, particularly sleep spindles. Although sleep spindles have been associated with benefits in memory retention, it is not well understood how spindles modify neural memory traces. This study found that spindles during overnight sleep correlate with changes in neural memory traces, including enhanced functional connectivity in distinct hippocampal-cortical networks and increased pattern similarity amongst memories in the cortex. The results provide critical evidence that spindles during overnight sleep may act as a physiological mechanism for the restructuring of neural memory traces.
Forced conceptual thought induced by electrical stimulation of the left prefrontal gyrus involves widespread neural networks
BACKGROUND:Early accounts of forced thought were reported at the onset of a focal seizure, and characterized as vague, repetitive, and involuntary intellectual auras distinct from perceptual or psychic hallucinations or illusions. Here, we examine the neural underpinnings involved in conceptual thought by presenting a series of 3 patients with epilepsy reporting intrusive thoughts during electrical stimulation of the left lateral prefrontal cortex (PFC) during invasive surgical evaluation. We illustrate the widespread networks involved through two independent brain imaging modalities: resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) (rs-fMRI) and task-based meta-analytic connectivity modeling (MACM). METHODS:We report the clinical and stimulation characteristics of three patients with left hemispheric language dominance who demonstrate forced thought with functional mapping. To examine the brain networks underlying this phenomenon, we used the regions of interest (ROI) centered at the active electrode pairs. We modeled functional networks using two approaches: (1) rs-fMRI functional connectivity analysis, representing 81 healthy controls and (2) meta-analytic connectivity modeling (MACM), representing 8260 healthy subjects. We also determined the overlapping regions between these three subjects' rs-fMRI and MACM networks through a conjunction analysis. RESULTS:We identified that left PFC was associated with a large-scale functional network including frontal, temporal, and parietal regions, a network that has been associated with multiple cognitive functions including semantics, speech, attention, working memory, and explicit memory. CONCLUSIONS:We illustrate the neural networks involved in conceptual thought through a unique patient population and argue that PFC supports this function through activation of a widespread network.