Interneurones are not so dormant in temporal lobe epilepsy: a critical reappraisal of the dormant basket cell hypothesis.
AbstractInternational audienceOne axiom at the basis of epilepsy research is that there exists an imbalance between excitation and inhibition. This abnormality can be achieved by an increase of excitation on principal cells, a decreased inhibition (i.e. disinhibition) or both. This review focuses on dysfunction of inhibition, and in particular on the 'dormant basket cell hypothesis'. This hypothesis states that, (1) interneurones are functionally disconnected from excitatory afferents, resulting in hyperexcitability of principal neurones and loss of paired pulse inhibition, (2) when properly activated, interneurones can still perform their task, i.e. suppress epileptiform activity and restore paired pulse inhibition. The aim of this review is to discuss the evidence in support of the 'dormant basket cell hypothesis'. We will first discuss the rationale underlying the hypothesis and the criteria needed to validate the hypothesis. We will then show that, (1) the key experimental data offered in support of the hypothesis (Bekenstein and Lothman, 1993. Dormancy of inhibitory interneurones in a model of temporal lobe epilepsy. Science 259, 97-100; Sloviter, 1991. Permanently altered hippocampal structure, excitability, and inhibition after experimental status epilepticus in the rat: the 'dormant basket cell' hypothesis and its relevance to temporal lobe epilepsy. Hippocampus 1, 41-66) are difficult to interpret, and (2) recent recordings from interneurones in epileptic tissue argue against the hypothesis. The 'dormant basket cell hypothesis' is then discussed in the broader context of disinhibition