Spontaneous epileptiform activity in a rat model of bilateral subcortical band heterotopia

Abstract : Objective: Malformations of cortical development are common causes of intellectual disability and epilepsy, yet there is a crucial lack of relevant preclinical models associating seizures and cortical malformations. Here, we describe a novel rat model with bilateral subcortical band heterotopia (SBH) and examine whether this model develops spontaneous epileptic seizures. Methods: To generate bilateral SBH in rats, we combined RNAi-mediated knockdown of Dcx and in utero electroporation with a tripolar electrode configuration enabling simultaneous transfection of the two brain hemispheres. To determine whether bilateral SBH leads to epileptiform activity, rats of various ages were implanted for telemetric electrocorticographic recordings and histopathologi-cal examination was carried out at the end of the recording sessions. Results: By 2 months, rats with bilateral SBH showed nonconvulsive spontaneous seizures consisting of spike-and-wave discharges (SWDs) with dominant frequencies in the alpha and theta bands and secondarily in higher-frequency bands. SWDs occurred during both the dark and the light period, but were more frequent during quiet awake state than during sleep. Also, SWDs were more frequent and lasted longer at older ages. No sex differences were found. Although frequencies and durations of SWDs were found to be uncorrelated with the size of SBH, SWDs were initiated in some occasions from brain hemispheres comprising a larger SBH. Lastly, SWDs exhibited absence-like pharmacological properties , being temporarily alleviated by ethosuximide administration. Significance: This novel model of bilateral SBH with spontaneous epilepsy may potentially provide valuable new insights into causality between cortical malfor-mations and seizures, and help translational research aiming at designing novel treatment strategies for epilepsy. K E Y W O R D S animal model, epilepsy, gray matter heterotopia, malformation of cortical development-This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.
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Submitted on : Monday, October 21, 2019 - 3:25:00 PM
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Surajit Sahu, Emmanuelle Buhler, Jean-Christophe Vermoyal, Françoise Watrin, Alfonso Represa, et al.. Spontaneous epileptiform activity in a rat model of bilateral subcortical band heterotopia. Epilepsia, Wiley, 2019, 60 (2), pp.337-348. ⟨10.1111/epi.14633⟩. ⟨inserm-02321955⟩

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