Electrocorticography is an indispensable tool in identifying the epileptogenic zone in the presurgical evaluation of many epilepsy patients. Traditional electrocorticographic features (spikes, ictal onset changes, and recently high-frequency oscillations [HFOs]) rely on the presence of transient features that occur within or near epileptogenic cortex. Here the authors report on a novel corticography feature of epileptogenic cortex—covariation of high-gamma and beta frequency band power profiles. Band-limited power was measured from each recording site based on native physiological signal differences without relying on clinical ictal or interictal epileptogenic features. In this preliminary analysis, frequency windowed power correlation appears to be a specific marker of the epileptogenic zone. The authors’ overall aim was to validate this observation with the location of the eventual resection and outcome.
The authors conducted a retrospective analysis of 13 adult patients who had undergone electrocorticography for surgical planning at their center. They quantified the correlation of high-gamma (70–200 Hz) and beta (12–18 Hz) band frequency power per electrode site during a cognitive task. They used a sliding window method to correlate the power of smoothed, Hilbert-transformed high-gamma and beta bands. They then compared positive and negative correlations between power in the high-gamma and beta bands in the setting of a hand versus a tongue motor task as well as within the resting state. Significant positive correlations were compared to surgically resected areas and outcomes based on reviewed records.
Positive high-gamma and beta correlations appeared to predict the area of eventual resection and, preliminarily, surgical outcome independent of spike detection. In general, patients with the best outcomes had well-localized positive correlations (high-gamma and beta activities) to areas of eventual resection, while those with poorer outcomes displayed more diffuse patterns.
Data in this study suggest that positive high-gamma and beta correlations independent of any behavioral metric may have clinical applicability in surgical decision-making. Further studies are needed to evaluate the clinical potential of this methodology. Additional work is also needed to relate these results to other methods, such as HFO detection or connectivity with other cortical areas.