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Clínica de Epilepsia | Trabalhos na Íntegra

c-FOS Expression After Hippocampal Deep Brain Stimulation in Normal Rats

da Silva JC1, Scorza FA, Nejm MB, Cavalheiro EA, Cukiert A.


We studied the effects of Hip-deep brain stimulation (DBS) on the expression of the inducible transcription factor c-FOS in the brain of normal rats.


Ten Wistar rats were anesthetized, and nine were implanted with epidural and hippocampal electrodes for brain activity recording; one animal was used as sham. Bipolar stimulating electrodes were implanted in the left hippocampus. Three animals were used as control (implanted but not stimulated), one as sham (not implanted, not stimulated), and six as the study group. Stimulation was carried out using square wave pulses with 0.8V, 300 μsec, and 130 Hz (∼25μC/cm2) on the left hippocampus through the implanted bipolar hippocampal lead. Three animals were submitted to a one-hour and three to a six-hour stimulation session. Immunohistochemistry was employed to visualize c-FOS distribution in the rat's brain. The presence of seizures and electrocorticographic findings also were observed.


In animals submitted to both one-hour or six-hour unilateral hippocampal stimulation sessions, there was a significant bilateral overexpression of c-FOS in the hippocampus proper, dentate gyrus, and hylus. In the CA1 and CA3 regions, although activation was bilateral, c-FOS hyperexpression prevailed at the stimulated side over time; this was not true for the hilar and dentate gyrus regions where a more symmetric activation occurred over time. A significant c-FOS activation occurred after one hour of Hip-DBS in the ipsilateral amygdala; there was no contralateral amygdala activation, and by six hours, no amygdala activation was noted. No c-FOS activation was noted in other brain areas.


Our data showed that unilateral Hip-DBS was able to cause widespread and persistent bilateral activation of the normal rat limbic system, although in some, nuclei activation prevailed over the stimulated side. Cortical activation outside the limbic system was not noted. Our data represent a first approach to study the mechanistic paradigm involved in Hip-DBS.

© 2013 International Neuromodulation Society.