Focal brain cooling (FBC) is under investigation in preclinical trials of intractable epilepsy (IE), including status epilepticus (SE). This method has been studied in rodents as a possible treatment for epileptic disorders, but more evidence from large animal studies is required. To provide evidence that FBC is a safe and effective therapy for IE, we investigated if FBC using a titanium cooling plate can reduce or terminate focal neocortical seizures without having a significant impact on brain tissue. Two cats and two macaque monkeys were chronically implanted with an epidural FBC device over the somatosensory and motor cortex. Penicillin G was delivered via the intracranial cannula for induction of local seizures. Repetitive FBC was performed using a cooling device implanted for a medium-term period (FBC for 30min at least twice every week; 3 months total) in three of the four animals. The animals exhibited seizures with repetitive epileptiform discharges (EDs) after administration of penicillin G, and these discharges decreased at less than 20°C cooling with no adverse histological effects. The results of this study suggest that epidural FBC is a safe and effective potential treatment for IE and SE.
Keywords: Epilepsy; Focal brain cooling; Hypothermia; Implantable device; Motor cortex; Neuromodulation; Penicillin G.
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