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Impact of high-frequency stimulation parameters on the pattern of discharge of subthalamic neurons.

Abstract : In clinical conditions, high-frequency stimulation (HFS) of subthalamic (STN) neurons in Parkinson's disease is empirically applied at > or =100 Hz (130-185 Hz), with pulses of short duration (60-100 micros) and 1- to 3-mA amplitude. Other parameter values produce no effect or aggravate the symptoms. To gain a better understanding of the mechanisms that underlie the therapeutic action of HFS, we have compared the effects of different combinations of parameter values delivered by clinical stimulators on the activity of STN neurons recorded in whole cell patch-clamp configuration in slices. We showed that none of tested combinations of parameters silenced the neurons. Non-therapeutic combinations i.e., low-frequency pulses (10-50 Hz), even at large amplitude or width, further excited the STN neurons with respect to their spontaneous activity. In contrast, combinations in the therapeutic range (80-185 Hz, 90-200 micros, 500-800 microA) replaced the preexisting activity by spikes, time-locked to the stimuli and thus presenting a striking regularity. When increasing pulse width or amplitude in this high-frequency range, the dual effect was still present but the activity generated became more irregular. We propose that during HFS at clinically relevant parameters, STN neurons behave as stable oscillators entirely driven by the stimulation, giving an average stable STN output that overrides spontaneous activity and introduces high-frequency regular spiking in the basal ganglia network.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, May 18, 2010 - 3:06:34 PM
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Liliana Garcia, Giampaolo d'Alessandro, Pierre-Olivier Fernagut, Bernard Bioulac, Constance Hammond. Impact of high-frequency stimulation parameters on the pattern of discharge of subthalamic neurons.. Journal of Neurophysiology, American Physiological Society, 2005, 94 (6), pp.3662-9. ⟨10.1152/jn.00496.2005⟩. ⟨inserm-00484495⟩

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