[Comp-neuro] review announcement: Computer modeling of epilepsy

Bill Lytton billl at neurosim.downstate.edu
Wed Jul 9 14:40:26 CEST 2008

This review is meant to both introduce epileptologists to computer
modeling and to introduce modelers to epilepsy research, an area that
is both relatively advanced and relatively well-funded. 

Lytton WW. Computer modelling of epilepsy. Nat Rev
Neurosci. 2008 Jul 2. Epub ahead of  print. PMID:18594562 


Epilepsy is a complex set of disorders that can involve many areas of
the cortex, as well as underlying deep-brain systems. The myriad
manifestations of seizures, which can be as varied as déjà vu and
olfactory hallucination, can therefore give researchers insights into
regional functions and relations. Epilepsy is also complex
genetically and pathophysiologically: it involves microscopic (on the
scale of ion channels and synaptic proteins), macroscopic (on the
scale of brain trauma and rewiring) and intermediate changes in a
complex interplay of causality. It has long been recognized that
computer modelling will be required to disentangle causality, to
better understand seizure spread and to understand and eventually
predict treatment efficacy. Over the past few years, substantial
progress has been made in modelling epilepsy at levels ranging from
the molecular to the socioeconomic. We review these efforts and
connect them to the medical goals of understanding and treating the

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