“You identify the area in the brain that generates high-frequency oscillations and dissect this area, and the patient can potentially be seizure free.”

When it comes to patients with epilepsy, the condition can be not only resistant to medications, but the resulting seizures can cause serious complications and additional health risks, leading some physicians to resort to surgical intervention.

Currently, there are several non-invasive tests which are utilized in phase 1 of the surgical process to attempt to determine the functional and epileptogenic areas of the brain. Although, these techniques can result in non-concordant findings, which leads physicians to phase 2 of the process—which is more invasive.

However, Christos Papadelis, PhD, and his colleagues with the HOPE project are seeking to reduce the number of patients on long-term invasive recordings and to mitigate the risk of invasive procedures by improving the non-invasive technique of automatically detecting a biomarker in adult and pediatric patients: high-frequency oscillations. These oscillations have recently been found to be a specific biomarker for epileptogenicity, and can possibly help guide surgical planning for patients with epilepsy. The goal is to detect these oscillations non-invasively. 

At the American Epilepsy Society’s 2018 annual meeting in New Orleans, Louisiana, Papadelis sat with NeurologyLive to discuss the HOPE project and its goals moving forward.