Serotonin transporter in the temporal lobe, hippocampus and amygdala in SUDEP

Patodia, S., Somani, A., Liu, J.Y.W., Cattaneo, A., Paradisco, B., Garcia, M., Othman, M., Diehl, B., Foong, J. and Thom, M. 2022. Serotonin transporter in the temporal lobe, hippocampus and amygdala in SUDEP. Brain Pathology. Advanced online publication. https://doi.org/10.1111/bpa.13074

TitleSerotonin transporter in the temporal lobe, hippocampus and amygdala in SUDEP
TypeJournal article
AuthorsPatodia, S., Somani, A., Liu, J.Y.W., Cattaneo, A., Paradisco, B., Garcia, M., Othman, M., Diehl, B., Foong, J. and Thom, M.
Abstract

Several lines of evidence link deficient serotonin function and SUDEP. Chronic treatment with serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SRIs) reduces ictal central apnoea, a risk factor for SUDEP. Reduced medullary serotonergic neurones, modulators of respiration in response to hypercapnia, were reported in a SUDEP post-mortem series. The amygdala and hippocampus have high serotonergic innervation and are functionally implicated in seizure-related respiratory dysregulation. We explored serotonergic networks in mesial temporal lobe structures in a surgical and post-mortem epilepsy series in relation to SUDEP risk. We stratified 75 temporal lobe epilepsy patients with hippocampal sclerosis (TLE/HS) into high (16), medium (11) and low risk (48) groups for SUDEP based on generalised seizure frequency. We also included the amygdala in 35 post-mortem cases, including SUDEP (17), epilepsy controls (10) and non-epilepsy controls (8). The immunohistochemistry labelling index (LI) and axonal length (AL) of serotonin transporter (SERT)-positive axons were quantified in 13 regions of interest with image analysis. SERT LI was highest in amygdala and subiculum regions. In the surgical series, higher SERT LI was observed in high risk than low risk cases in the dentate gyrus, CA1 and subiculum (p<0.05). In the post-mortem cases higher SERT LI and AL was observed in the basal and accessory basal nuclei of the amygdala and peri-amygdala cortex in SUDEP compared to epilepsy controls (p<0.05). Patients on SRI showed higher SERT in the dentate gyrus (p<0.005) and CA4 (p<0.05) but there was no difference in patients with or without a psychiatric history. Higher SERT in hippocampal subfields in TLE/HS cases with SUDEP risk factors and higher amygdala SERT in post-mortem SUDEP cases than epilepsy controls supports a role for altered serotonergic networks involving limbic regions in SUDEP. This may be of functional relevance through reduced 5-HT availability.

KeywordsSUDEP
amygdala
hippocampus
serotonin transporter
SRI
JournalBrain Pathology
Year2022
PublisherWiley
Publisher's version
License
CC BY-NC 4.0
File Access Level
Open (open metadata and files)
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1111/bpa.13074
Publication dates
Published online27 Apr 2022

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