Epilepsy and Excitation Explored

Science's STKE  19 Nov 2002:
Vol. 2002, Issue 159, pp. tw432-TW432
DOI: 10.1126/stke.2002.159.tw432

Human temporal lobe epilepsy is a severe and potentially life-threatening disorder. Cohen et al. (see the Perspective by Köhling) recorded from neurons in specimens from epileptic patients who had undergone surgery for treatment of the disease. In a brain area called the subiculum, they observed synchronous discharges reminiscent of the patients' EEG records. In a subpopulation of pyramidal neurons from this area, GABAergic input was not inhibitory but rather depolarizing and therefore excitatory.

I. Cohen, V. Navarro, S. Clemenceau, M. Baulac, R. Miles, On the origin of interictal activity in human temporal lobe epilepsy in vitro. Science 298, 1418-1421 (2002). [Abstract] [Full Text]

R. Köhling, GABA becomes exciting. Science 298, 1350-1351 (2002). [Summary] [Full Text]