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How inhibition influences seizure propagation

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Andrew Trevelyan


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Inhibitory neuron behaviour is of fundamental importance to epileptic pathophysiology. When inhibition is compromised, such as by GABAergic blockade (Curtis et al., 1970; Connors, 1984; Traub and Miles, 1991) or by shifts in GABAergic reversal potential (Huberfeld et al., 2007), epileptiform discharges occur far more readily. Other studies have shown enhanced inhibition in vivo in the surrounding cortical territories associated with both focal pathological and physiological activity (Prince and Wilder, 1967; Dichter and Spencer, 1969a, b; Goldensohn and Salazar, 1986; Traub and Miles, 1991; Liang and Jones, 1997; Liang et al., 1998; Schwartz and Bonhoeffer, 2001). This gave rise to the concept of an “inhibitory restraint”. This concept can explain the often confusing anatomical reorganizations seen in chronically epileptic brains (Sloviter, 1987; Cossart et al., 2001), indicating which changes might be pro-epileptic, and which oppose the epileptic state. It also may explain key electrophysiological features of epileptic seizures. Here we describe current knowledge about the restraint, gleaned mainly from acute pharmacological experiments in animals, both in vivo and in vitro, and speculate how this may alter our understanding of human seizure activity in clinical practice.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Trevelyan AJ, Schevon CA

Publication type: Review

Publication status: Published

Journal: Neuropharmacology

Year: 2013

Volume: 69

Pages: 45-54

Print publication date: 01/06/2013

Online publication date: 18/06/2012

Acceptance date: 08/06/2012

ISSN (print): 0028-3908

ISSN (electronic): 1873-7064


DOI: 10.1016/j.neuropharm.2012.06.015

PubMed id: 22722026