Toggle Main Menu Toggle Search

Open Access padlockePrints

Multiple mechanisms shape the relationship between pathway and duration of focal seizures

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Gabrielle SchroederORCiD, Dr Peter TaylorORCiD, Dr Yujiang WangORCiD



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


© The Author(s) 2022. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted reuse, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. A seizure's electrographic dynamics are characterized by its spatiotemporal evolution, also termed dynamical 'pathway', and the time it takes to complete that pathway, which results in the seizure's duration. Both seizure pathways and durations have been shown to vary within the same patient. However, it is unclear whether seizures following the same pathway will have the same duration or if these features can vary independently. We compared within-subject variability in these seizure features using (i) epilepsy monitoring unit intracranial EEG (iEEG) recordings of 31 patients (mean: 6.7 days, 16.5 seizures/subject), (ii) NeuroVista chronic iEEG recordings of 10 patients (mean: 521.2 days, 252.6 seizures/subject) and (iii) chronic iEEG recordings of three dogs with focal-onset seizures (mean: 324.4 days, 62.3 seizures/subject). While the strength of the relationship between seizure pathways and durations was highly subject-specific, in most subjects, changes in seizure pathways were only weakly to moderately associated with differences in seizure durations. The relationship between seizure pathways and durations was strengthened by seizures that were 'truncated' versions, both in pathway and duration, of other seizures. However, the relationship was weakened by seizures that had a common pathway, but different durations ('elasticity'), or had similar durations, but followed different pathways ('semblance'). Even in subjects with distinct populations of short and long seizures, seizure durations were not a reliable indicator of different seizure pathways. These findings suggest that seizure pathways and durations are modulated by multiple different mechanisms. Uncovering such mechanisms may reveal novel therapeutic targets for reducing seizure duration and severity.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Schroeder GM, Chowdhury FA, Cook MJ, Diehl B, Duncan JS, Karoly PJ, Taylor PN, Wang Y

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Brain Communications

Year: 2022

Volume: 4

Issue: 4

Online publication date: 06/07/2022

Acceptance date: 30/06/2022

Date deposited: 02/09/2022

ISSN (electronic): 2632-1297

Publisher: Oxford University Press


DOI: 10.1093/braincomms/fcac173


Altmetrics provided by Altmetric


Funder referenceFunder name
Epilepsy Research UK