Clinical Neuroscience

[Nature Reviews Drug Discovery: editorial article of neuroscientists from Szeged about kynurenine (IF: 33.078)]


JANUARY 30, 2014

Clinical Neuroscience - 2014;67(01-02)



Further articles in this publication

Clinical Neuroscience

[Dostoyevsky’s epilepsy in the light of recent neurobiological data]

TÉNYI Dalma, RAJNA Péter, JANSZKY József, HORVÁTH Zsuzsanna, TÉNYI Tamás, GYIMESI Csilla

[Background and purpose -Since the 1960s several theories have developed on the epilepsy of Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoyevsky. Probably the most exciting and still actual question might be the subject of the „ecstatic aura”, he described in his novels based on his own experiences. During this extremely rare seizure onset the patients experience a strong sense of happiness, harmony and wholeness. The symptomatogenic zone of ecstatic seizures were considered to be of temporal lobe origin for a long time. Lately though this theory seems to be questioned based on the results of SPECT and deep brain EEG monitoring techniques in addition to the enrichment of our knowledge concerning the function of the insular cortex. Methods - Literary and scientific overview on the subject of Dostoyevsky’s epilepsy, with special concern to his ecstatic seizures. Results and conclusion - According to new electrophysiology and imaging techniques ecstatic seizures - including the seizure onset of Dostoyevsky - could rather be connected to the insular cortex.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Sleep-EEG in dizygotic twins discordant for Williams syndrome]

BÓDIZS Róbert, GOMBOS Ferenc, SZŐCS Katalin, RÉTHELYI M. János, GERVÁN Patrícia, KOVÁCS Ilona

[Background and purpose - Reports on twin pairs concordant and discordant for Williams syndrome were published before, but no study unravelled sleep physiology in these cases yet. We aim to fill this gap by analyzing sleep records of a twin pair discordant for Williams syndrome extending our focus on presleep wakefulness and sleep spindling. Methods - We performed multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification of the 7q11.23 region of a 17 years old dizygotic opposite-sex twin pair discordant for Williams syndrome. Polysomnography of laboratory sleep at this age was analyzed and followed-up after 1.5 years by ambulatory polysomnography. Sleep stages scoring, EEG power spectra and sleep spindle analyses were carried out. Results - The twin brother showed reduced levels of amplification for all of the probes in the 7q11.23 region indicating a typical deletion spanning at least 1.038 Mb between FKBP6 and CLIP2. The results of the twin sister showed normal copy numbers in the investigated region. Lower sleep times and efficiencies, as well as higher slow wave sleep percents of the twin brother were evident during both recordings. Roughly equal NREM, Stage 2 and REM sleep percents were found. EEG analyses revealed state and derivation- independent decreases in α power, lack of an α spectral peak in presleep wakefulness, as well as higher NREM sleep σ peak frequency in the twin brother. Faster sleep spindles with lower amplitude and shorter duration characterized the records of the twin brother. Spectra show a striking reliability and correspondence between the two situations (laboratory vs. home records). Conclusion - Alterations in sleep and specific neural oscillations including the α/σ waves are inherent aspects of Williams syndrome.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Clinical studies with levodopa/carbidopa intestinal gel]


[The motor complications in advanced Parkinson’s disease may interfere with the quality of life. To overcome this disability, a jejunal levodopa pump was developed. In this review we have summarized the published clinical data with this method.]

Clinical Neuroscience


Clinical Neuroscience

[Relationship between default mode network and consciousness]


[Neural correlation with consciousness represents a main topic of neuroscience studies. New results of consciousness researches proved that based on a coherent function in between its components the default mode network activity is the condition for awake consciousness. The subject of consciousness is self. Tasks related with the self were proving a high default mode network activity. Using connections inside the network, results which were related with self, could be considered to represent a polymodal integration system are they are participating in fine processing of the highly integrated associative information. It could be a result of the convergence of cognitive binding. There is a strong connection between the level of consciousness and praecuneal activation. It was proved that the network activity is changing during sleeping (normal condition), trauma or under drug induced altered consciousness. The default network activity can be considered as the neural correlate of consciousness. Further researches are warranted to answer the question: is the activity of the network the cause or is just accompanying the development of human consciousness?]

All articles in the issue

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Lege Artis Medicinae

[Comment to the article titled “Exploratory study of outcomes of blood sample mass examinations by rank correlations”]

Clinical Neuroscience

Neuroscience highlights: Main cell types underlying memory and spatial navigation

KRABOTH Zoltán, KÁLMÁN Bernadette

Interest in the hippocampal formation and its role in navigation and memory arose in the second part of the 20th century, at least in part due to the curious case of Henry G. Molaison, who underwent brain surgery for intractable epilepsy. The temporal association observed between the removal of his entorhinal cortex along with a significant part of hippocampus and the developing severe memory deficit inspired scientists to focus on these regions. The subsequent discovery of the so-called place cells in the hippocampus launched the description of many other functional cell types and neuronal networks throughout the Papez-circuit that has a key role in memory processes and spatial information coding (speed, head direction, border, grid, object-vector etc). Each of these cell types has its own unique characteristics, and together they form the so-called “Brain GPS”. The aim of this short survey is to highlight for practicing neurologists the types of cells and neuronal networks that represent the anatomical substrates and physiological correlates of pathological entities affecting the limbic system, especially in the temporal lobe. For that purpose, we survey early discoveries along with the most relevant neuroscience observations from the recent literature. By this brief survey, we highlight main cell types in the hippocampal formation, and describe their roles in spatial navigation and memory processes. In recent decades, an array of new and functionally unique neuron types has been recognized in the hippocampal formation, but likely more remain to be discovered. For a better understanding of the heterogeneous presentations of neurological disorders affecting this anatomical region, insights into the constantly evolving neuroscience behind may be helpful. The public health consequences of diseases that affect memory and spatial navigation are high, and grow as the population ages, prompting scientist to focus on further exploring this brain region.

Clinical Neuroscience

[Zonisamide: one of the first-line antiepileptic drugs in focal epilepsy ]


[Chronic administration of antiepileptic drugs without history of unprovoked epileptic seizures are not recommended for epilepsy prophylaxis. Conversely, if the patient suffered the first unprovoked seizure, then the presence of epileptiform discharges on the EEG, focal neurological signs, and the presence of epileptogenic lesion on the MRI are risk factors for a second seizure (such as for the development of epilepsy). Without these risk factors, the chance of a second seizure is about 25-30%, while the presence of these risk factors (for example signs of previous stroke, neurotrauma, or encephalitis on the MRI) can predict >70% seizure recurrence. Thus the International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE) re-defined the term ’epilepsy’ which can be diagnosed even after the first seizure, if the risk of seizure recurrence is high. According to this definition, we can start antiepileptic drug therapy after a single unprovoked seizure. There are four antiepileptic drugs which has the highest evidence (level „A”) as first-line initial monotherapy for treating newly diagnosed epilepsy. These are: carbamazepine, phenytoin, levetiracetam, and zonisamide (ZNS). The present review focuses on the ZNS. Beacuse ZNS can be administrated once a day, it is an optimal drug for maintaining patient’s compliance and for those patients who have a high risk for developing a non-compliance (for example teenagers and young adults). Due to the low interaction potential, ZNS treatment is safe and effective in treating epilepsy of elderly people. ZNS is an ideal drug in epilepsy accompanied by obesity, because ZNS has a weight loss effect, especially in obese patients.]

Clinical Neuroscience

TLR4 (Toll-like receptor-4) expression and frontal-cingulate volumes in schizophrenia

LI Hua, KÉRI Szabolcs

Evidence suggests that pathogen-associated pattern recognition receptors (Toll-like receptors, TLRs) are implicated in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. TLRs are important in both peripheral immune responses and neuronal plasticity. However, the relationship between peripheral TLR expression and regional brain volumes is unknown in schizophrenia. We therefore assessed 30 drug-naïve, first-episode patients with schizophrenia. TLR4+/TLR1+ monocytes were measured using flow-cytometry. High resolution magnetic resonance images (T1 MRI) were obtained and analyzed with FreeSurfer. Results revealed significant negative correlations between the percentage of TLR4+ monocytes, mean fluorescent intensities, and brain volumes in frontal and anterior cingulate regions. The measures of TLR1+ monocytes did not show significant relationships with regional brain volumes. These results raise the possibility that abnormal TLR-activation is associated with decreased brain volumes in schizophrenia.

Clinical Neuroscience

Effects of valproate, carbamazepine and levetiracetam on Tp-e interval, Tp-e/QT and Tp-e/QTc ratio


Aim - To evaluate P-wave dispersion before and after antiepileptic drug (AED) treatment as well as to investigate the risk of ventricular repolarization using the Tpeak-Tend (Tp-e) interval and Tp-e/QT ratio in patients with epileptic disorder. Methods - A total of 63 patients receiving AED therapy and 35 healthy adults were included. ECG recordings were obtained before and 3 months after anti-epileptic treatment among patients with epilepsy. For both groups, Tp-e and Tp-e/QT ratio were measured using a 12-lead ECG device. Results - Tp-e interval, Tpe/QT and Tp-e/QTc ratios were found to be higher in the patient group than in the control group (p<0.05, for all), while QTmax ratio was significantly lower in the patient group. After 3 months of AED therapy, significant increases in QT max, QTc max, QTcd, Tp-e, Tp-e/QT, and Tp-e/QTc were found among the patients (p<0.05). When the arrhythmic effects of the drugs before and after treatment were compared, especially in the valproic acid group, there were significant increases in Tp-e interval, Tp-e/QT and Tp-e/QTc values after three months of treatment (p<0.05). Carbamazepine and levetiracetam groups were not statistically significant in terms of pre- and post-treatment values. Conclusions - It was concluded that an arrhythmogenic environment may be associated with the disease, and patients who received AED monotherapy may need to be followed up more closely for arrhythmia.