Effects of hippocampal low-frequency stimulation in idiopathic non-human primate epilepsy assessed via a remote-sensing-enabled neurostimulator

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Abstract

Individuals with pharmacoresistant epilepsy remain a large and under-treated patient population. Continued technologic advancements in implantable neurostimulators have spurred considerable research efforts directed towards the development of novel antiepileptic stimulation therapies. However, the lack of adequate preclinical experimental platforms has precluded a detailed understanding of the differential effects of stimulation parameters on neuronal activity within seizure networks. In order to chronically monitor seizures and the effects of stimulation in a freely-behaving non-human primate with idiopathic epilepsy, we employed a novel simultaneous video-intracranial EEG recording platform using a state-of-the-art sensing-enabled, rechargeable clinical neurostimulator with real-time seizure detection and wireless data streaming capabilities. Using this platform, we were able to characterize the electrographic and semiologic features of the focal-onset, secondarily generalizing tonic-clonic seizures stably expressed in this animal. A series of acute experiments exploring low-frequency (2 Hz) hippocampal stimulation identified a pulse width (150 μs) and current amplitude (4 mA) combination which maximally suppressed local hippocampal activity. These optimized stimulation parameters were then delivered to the seizure onset-side hippocampus in a series of chronic experiments. This long-term testing revealed that the suppressive effects of low-frequency hippocampal stimulation 1) diminish when delivered continuously but are maintained when stimulation is cycled on and off, 2) are dependent on circadian rhythms, and 3) do not necessarily confer seizure protective effects.

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