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Wen-Han Hu, Chao Zhang, Kai Zhang, Xiao-Qiu Shao and Jian-Guo Zhang

OBJECT

Conflicting conclusions have been reported regarding several factors that may predict seizure outcomes after hemispheric surgery for refractory epilepsy. The goal of this study was to identify the possible predictors of seizure outcome by pooling the rates of postoperative seizure freedom found in the published literature.

METHODS

A comprehensive literature search of PubMed, Embase, and the Cochrane Library identified English-language articles published since 1970 that describe seizure outcomes in patients who underwent hemispheric surgery for refractory epilepsy. Two reviewers independently assessed article eligibility and extracted the data. The authors pooled rates of seizure freedom from papers included in the study. Eight potential prognostic variables were identified and dichotomized for analyses. The authors also compared continuous variables within seizure-free and seizure-recurrent groups. Random- or fixed-effects models were used in the analyses depending on the presence or absence of heterogeneity.

RESULTS

The pooled seizure-free rate among the 1528 patients (from 56 studies) who underwent hemispheric surgery was 73%. Patients with an epilepsy etiology of developmental disorders, generalized seizures, nonlateralization on electroencephalography, and contralateral MRI abnormalities had reduced odds of being seizure-free after surgery.

CONCLUSIONS

Hemispheric surgery is an effective therapeutic modality for medically intractable epilepsy. This meta-analysis provides useful evidence-based information for the selection of candidates for hemispheric surgery, presurgical counseling, and explanation of seizure outcomes.

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Zhaoyang Xu, Guoxiong Lin, Han Zhang, Shengchun Xu and Ming Zhang

OBJECTIVE

Kambin’s triangle and the safe triangle are common posterolateral approaches for lumbar transforaminal endoscopic surgery and epidural injection. To date, no consensus has been reached on the optimal transforaminal approach, in particular its underlying anatomical mechanism. The aim of this study was to investigate the 3D architecture of the neurovascular and adipose zones in the upper and lower lumbar intervertebral foramina (IVFs).

METHODS

Using the epoxy sheet plastination technology, 22 cadaveric lumbar spines (12 female and 10 male, age range 46–89 years) were prepared as a series of transverse (11 sets), sagittal (8 sets), and coronal (3 sets) slices with a thickness of 0.25 mm (6 sets) or 2.5 mm (16 sets). The high-resolution images of the slices were scanned and analyzed. The height, area, and volume of 30 IVFs from T12–L1 to L4–5 were estimated and compared. This study was performed in accord with the authors’ institutional ethical guidelines and approved by the institutional ethics committees.

RESULTS

The findings were as follows. 1) The 3D boundaries of the lumbar IVF and its subdivisions were precisely defined. 2) The 3D configuration of the neurovascular and adipose zones was different between the upper and lower lumbar IVFs; zoning in the upper lumbar IVFs was much more complex than that in the lower lumbar IVFs. 3) In general, the infraneural adipose zone gradually tapered and rotated from the inferoposterolateral aspect to the superoanteromedial aspect. 4) The average height, area, and volume of the IVF gradually increased from the upper to the lower lumbar spine. Within a lumbar IVF, the volumes below and above the inferior border of the dorsal root ganglia were similar.

CONCLUSIONS

This study highlights differences of fine 3D architecture of neurovascular and adipose tissues between the upper and lower lumbar IVFs, with related effects on the transforaminal approaches. The findings may contribute to optimization of the surgical approaches to and through the IVF at different lumbar spinal levels and also may help to shorten the learning curve for the transforminal techniques.

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Zhaoyang Xu, Lili Tu, Yanyan Zheng, Xiaohui Ma, Han Zhang and Ming Zhang

OBJECTIVE

Meralgia paresthetica is commonly caused by mechanical entrapment of the lateral femoral cutaneous nerve (LFCN). The entrapment often occurs at the site where the nerve exits the pelvis. Its optimal surgical management remains to be established, partly because the fine architecture of the fascial planes around the LFCN has not been elucidated. The aim of this study was to define the fascial configuration around the LFCN at its pelvic exit.

METHODS

Thirty-six cadavers (18 female, 18 male; age range 38–97 years) were used for dissection (57 sides of 30 cadavers) and sheet plastination and confocal microscopy (2 transverse and 4 sagittal sets of slices from 6 cadavers). Thirty-four healthy volunteers (19 female, 15 male; age range 20–62 years) were examined with ultrasonography.

RESULTS

The LFCN exited the pelvis via a tendinous canal within the internal oblique–iliac fascia septum and then ran in an adipose compartment between the sartorius and iliolata ligaments inferior to the anterior superior iliac spine (ASIS). The iliolata ligaments newly defined and termed in this study were 2–3 curtain strip–like structures which attached to the ASIS superiorly, were interwoven with the fascia lata inferomedially, and continued laterally as skin ligaments anchoring to the skin. Between the sartorius and tensor fasciae latae, the LFCN ran in a longitudinal ligamental canal bordered by the iliolata ligaments.

CONCLUSIONS

This study demonstrated that 1) the pelvic exit of the LFCN is within the internal oblique aponeurosis and 2) the iliolata ligaments form the part of the fascia lata over the LFCN and upper sartorius. These results indicate that the internal oblique–iliac fascia septum and iliolata ligaments may make the LFCN susceptible to mechanical entrapment near the ASIS. To surgically decompress the LFCN, it may be necessary to incise the oblique aponeurosis and iliac fascia medial to the LFCN tendinous canal and to free the iliolata ligaments from the ASIS.

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Nicholas M. Barbaro

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Wen-Han Hu, Chao Zhang, Kai Zhang, Fan-Gang Meng, Ning Chen and Jian-Guo Zhang

Object

Whether selective amygdalohippocampectomy (SelAH) has similar seizure outcomes and better neuropsychological outcomes compared with anterior temporal lobectomy (ATL) is a matter of debate. The aim of this study was to compare the 2 types of surgery with respect to seizure outcomes and changes in IQ scores.

Methods

PubMed, Embase, and the Cochrane Library were searched for relevant studies published between January 1990 and September 2012. Studies comparing SelAH and ATL with respect to seizure and intelligence outcomes were included. Two reviewers assessed the quality of the included studies and independently extracted the data. Odds ratios and standardized mean deviations with 95% confidence intervals were used to compare pooled proportions of freedom from seizures and changes in IQ scores between the SelAH and ATL groups.

Results

Three prospective and 10 retrospective studies were identified involving 745 and 766 patients who underwent SelAH and ATL, respectively. The meta-analysis demonstrated a statistically significant reduction in the odds of seizure freedom for patients who underwent SelAH compared with those who underwent ATL (OR 0.65 [95% CI 0.51–0.82], p = 0.0005). The differences between the changes in all IQ scores after the 2 types of surgery were not statistically significant, regardless of the side of resection.

Conclusions

Selective amygdalohippocampectomy statistically reduced the odds of being seizure free compared with ATL, but the clinical significance of this reduction needs to be further validated by well-designed randomized trials. Selective amygdalohippocampectomy did not have better outcomes than ATL with respect to intelligence.

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Yanlu Zhang, Michael Chopp, Yi Zhang, Zheng Gang Zhang, Mei Lu, Talan Zhang, Kuan-Han H. Wu, Li Zhang, Asim Mahmood and Ye Xiong

OBJECTIVE

The authors previously demonstrated that Cerebrolysin is effective for treatment of mild closed head injury (CHI) when administered 4 hours after injury. The aim of this study was to determine Cerebrolysin’s effects on functional and histological outcomes in rats subjected to moderate CHI.

METHODS

In this randomized, blinded, and vehicle-controlled preclinical trial, male adult Wistar rats subjected to moderate CHI received either Cerebrolysin treatment at a dose of 2.5 ml/kg (n = 13) or vehicle (saline, n = 13) intraperitoneally administered daily for 10 days, starting at 4 hours after injury. Animals were subjected to cognitive and sensorimotor functional tests at multiple time points, and they were killed 3 months after injury. The brains were processed for analyses of neuronal cell loss, amyloid precursor protein, axonal damage, and neurogenesis.

RESULTS

Compared with rats treated with vehicle (saline), rats treated with Cerebrolysin had significantly increased numbers of neuroblasts and newborn mature neurons in the dentate gyrus (DG) and attenuated amyloid precursor protein accumulation and axonal damage in various brain regions, as well as decreased neuronal loss in the DG and cornu ammonis 3 (CA3) region of the hippocampus (p < 0.05). Global testing using generalized estimating equations showed a significant beneficial effect of Cerebrolysin treatment on sensorimotor functional outcomes from 1 day to 3 months after injury compared to that of saline treatment (p < 0.05). Compared with vehicle-treated rats, Cerebrolysin-treated rats showed significantly and robustly improved long-term (up to 3 months) cognitive functional recovery, as measured by social interaction, Morris water maze, novel object recognition, and odor recognition tests. In the Cerebrolysin-treated rats there were significant correlations between multiple histological outcomes and functional recovery evident 3 months after moderate CHI, as indicated by Pearson partial correlation analyses.

CONCLUSIONS

The authors’ findings demonstrate that Cerebrolysin treatment significantly improves long-term functional and histological outcomes in rats with moderate CHI, with functional outcomes significantly correlated with histological indices of neuroplasticity and neuroprotection. These data indicate that Cerebrolysin may be useful for the treatment of moderate CHI.

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Marco Giulioni, Matteo Martinoni and Gianluca Marucci

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Jian-Hua Zhong, Hua-Jun Zhou, Tao Tang, Han-Jin Cui, A-Li Yang, Qi-Mei Zhang, Jing-Hua Zhou, Qiang Zhang, Xun Gong, Zhao-Hui Zhang and Zhi-Gang Mei

OBJECTIVE

Reactive astrogliosis, a key feature that is characterized by glial proliferation, has been observed in rat brains after intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH). However, the mechanisms that control reactive astrogliosis formation remain unknown. Notch-1 signaling plays a critical role in modulating reactive astrogliosis. The purpose of this paper was to establish whether Notch-1 signaling is involved in reactive astrogliosis after ICH.

METHODS

ICH was induced in adult male Sprague-Dawley rats via stereotactic injection of autologous blood into the right globus pallidus. N-[N-(3,5-difluorophenacetyl)-l-alanyl]-S-phenylglycine t-butyl ester (DAPT) was injected into the lateral ventricle to block Notch-1 signaling. The rats’ brains were perfused to identify proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA)-positive/GFAP-positive nuclei. The expression of GFAP, Notch-1, and the activated form of Notch-1 (Notch intracellular domain [NICD]) and its ligand Jagged-1 was assessed using immunohistochemical and Western blot analyses, respectively.

RESULTS

Notch-1 signaling was upregulated and activated after ICH as confirmed by an increase in the expression of Notch-1 and NICD and its ligand Jagged-1. Remarkably, blockade of Notch-1 signaling with the specific inhibitor DAPT suppressed astrocytic proliferation and GFAP levels caused by ICH. In addition, DAPT improved neurological outcome after ICH.

CONCLUSIONS

Notch-1 signaling is a critical regulator of ICH-induced reactive astrogliosis, and its blockage may be a potential therapeutic strategy for hemorrhagic injury.

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Yong Zhang, Xiang-Yang Bao, Lian Duan, Wei-Zhong Yang, De-Sheng Li, Zheng-Shan Zhang, Cong Han, Feng Zhao, Qian Zhang and Qian-Nan Wang

OBJECTIVE

The object of this study was to summarize the long-term effect of encephaloduroarteriosynangiosis (EDAS) for the treatment of pediatric moyamoya disease (MMD) and to investigate factors influencing the clinical outcomes of EDAS.

METHODS

Clinical features, angiographic findings, and clinical outcomes were analyzed among MMD patients younger than 18 years who had been treated with EDAS between 2002 and 2007 at the authors’ institution. The Kaplan-Meier method was used to estimate stroke risk after EDAS. Predictors of neurological outcome were assessed.

RESULTS

One hundred fifteen patients were identified. The mean age at symptom onset was 7.3 ± 4.0 years. The incidence of familial MMD was 11.3%. The female/male ratio was 1:1.16. A total of 232 EDAS procedures were performed, and the incidence of postoperative complications was 3%. Postoperative digital subtraction angiography was performed in 54% of the patients, and about 80% of the hemispheres showed good or excellent results. Neovascularization showed significant correlations with delay time (from symptom onset to first operation), Suzuki stage, and preoperative stroke (all p < 0.05). Clinical follow-up was available in 100 patients with a mean follow-up of 124.4 ± 10.5 months. Ten-year cumulative survival was 96.5% after surgery, and the risk of stroke was 0.33%/person-year. An independent life with no significant disability was reported by 92% of the patients. A good outcome correlated with a low Suzuki stage (p = 0.001). Older children and those without preoperative stroke had better clinical outcomes (p < 0.05).

CONCLUSIONS

On the basis of long-term follow-up data, the authors concluded that EDAS is a safe and effective treatment for pediatric MMD, can reduce the risk of subsequent neurological events, and can improve quality of life. The risk of ischemia-related complications was higher in younger patients, and older children showed better outcomes. Compensation was greater with more prominent cerebral ischemia. The long-term clinical outcome largely depended on the presence and extent of preoperative stroke.

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Donald Seyfried, Yuxia Han, Zhang Zheng, Nancy Day, Kamiar Moin, Sandra Rempel, Bonnie Sloane and Michael Chopp

✓ Lysosomal proteases, although tightly regulated under physiological conditions, are known to contribute to cell injury after various forms of tissue ischemia have occurred. Because cathepsin B is a prominent lysosomal protease found in brain parenchyma, the authors hypothesized that it may contribute to neuronal cell death after focal cerebral ischemia. The authors measured the expression and spatial distribution of cathepsin B within the ischemic brain in 43 animals by means of immunohistochemical analysis in a rat model of transient middle cerebral artery (MCA) occlusion. Cathepsin B activity was also measured within specific ischemic brain regions by using an in vitro assay (22 animals). In addition, the authors tested the therapeutic effect of preischemic intraventricular administration of stefin A, a cysteine protease inhibitor, on the volume of cerebral infarction after transient MCA occlusion (15 animals). Increased cathepsin B immunoreactivity was detected exclusively within the ischemic neurons after 2 hours of reperfusion following a 2-hour MCA occlusion. Cathepsin B immunolocalization in the ischemic region decreased by 24 hours of reperfusion, but then increased by 48 hours of reperfusion because the infarct was infiltrated by inflammatory cells. Increased immunolocalization of cathepsin B in the inflammatory cells located in the necrotic infarct core continued through 7 days of reperfusion. Cathepsin B enzymatic activity was significantly increased in the ischemic tissue at 2, 8, and 48 hours, but not at 24 hours of reperfusion after 2 hours of MCA occlusion. Continuous intraventricular infusion of stefin A, before 2 hours of MCA occlusion (15 animals), significantly reduced infarct volume compared with control animals (12 animals): the percentage of hemispheric infarct volume was 20 ± 3.9 compared with 33 ± 3.5 (standard error of the mean; p = 0.025). These data indicate that neuronal cathepsin B undergoes increased expression and activation within 2 hours of reperfusion after a 2-hour MCA occlusion and may be a mechanism contributing to neuronal cell death. Intraventricular infusion of stefin A, an inhibitor of cathepsin B, significantly reduces cerebral infarct volume in rats.