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Epilepsy Res. 2019 Sep;155:106156. doi: 10.1016/j.eplepsyres.2019.106156. Epub 2019 Jun 12.

Cardiac changes in epileptic baboons with high-frequency microburst VNS therapy: A pilot study.

Author information

1
Southwest National Primate Research Center, Texas Biomedical Research Institute, San Antonio, TX, United States. Electronic address: mdelagarzadvm@gmail.com.
2
emka TECHNOLOGIES, Inc., Falls Church, VA, United States.
3
Southwest National Primate Research Center, Texas Biomedical Research Institute, San Antonio, TX, United States.
4
Research Imaging Institute, UT Health San Antonio, San Antonio, TX, United States; South Texas Veterans Health Care System, San Antonio, TX, United States.
5
Research Imaging Institute, UT Health San Antonio, San Antonio, TX, United States.
6
Departments of Neurology and South Texas Comprehensive Epilepsy Center, UT Health San Antonio, San Antonio, TX, United States.

Abstract

The epileptic baboon provides a natural model of idiopathic generalized epilepsy and sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP). We sought to evaluate autonomic differences, including heart rate (HR), heart rate variability (HRV) and corrected QT-duration (QTc) between two epileptic (EB1, EB2) and one control (CB) baboon, and the autonomic effects of high-frequency (HF) microburst Vagal Nerve Stimulation (VNS) Therapy in the epileptic baboons. At baseline, EB2's HR was increased over both EB1 and CB, and EB1's HRV was decreased compared to the others. QTc-intervals were significantly prolonged in both epileptic baboons. EB1 became free of generalized tonic-clonic seizures (GTCS) with VNS therapy, whereas EB2's GTCS were reduced by a third. HR decreased in both epileptic baboons, but while HRV improved in EB1, it decreased in EB2. EB2 succumbed to SUDEP after 9 months. This pilot study demonstrates abnormalities in HR, HRV and QTc-intervals in epileptic baboons. HF VNS Therapy demonstrated different effects on HRV in the two epileptic baboons, which, in addition to persistent GTCS and elevated HR, may have contributed to SUDEP risk in EB2. Future studies are needed to establish normative values for HRV and determine variability of HR, HRV and QTc-intervals in epileptic baboons.

KEYWORDS:

Baboon; Epilepsy; Heart rate variability; High-frequency microburst VNS therapy; QT-intervals

PMID:
31284120
PMCID:
PMC6684821
[Available on 2020-09-01]
DOI:
10.1016/j.eplepsyres.2019.106156

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