Time-evolving controllability of effective connectivity networks during seizure progression

Brittany H. Scheid, Arian Ashourvan, Jennifer Stiso, Kathryn A. Davis, Fadi Mikhail, Fabio Pasqualetti, Brian Litt, Danielle S. Bassett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Over one third of the estimated 3 million people with epilepsy in the United States are medication resistant. Responsive neurostimulation from chronically implanted electrodes provides a promising treatment alternative to resective surgery. However, determining optimal personalized stimulation parameters, including when and where to intervene to guarantee a positive patient outcome, is a major open challenge. Network neuroscience and control theory offer useful tools that may guide improvements in parameter selection for control of anomalous neural activity. Here we use a method to characterize dynamic controllability across consecutive effective connectivity (EC) networks based on regularized partial correlations between implanted electrodes during the onset, propagation, and termination regimes of 34 seizures. We estimate regularized partial correlation adjacency matrices from 1-s time windows of intracranial electrocorticography recordings using the Graphical Least Absolute Shrinkage and Selection Operator (GLASSO). Average and modal controllability metrics calculated from each resulting EC network track the time-varying controllability of the brain on an evolving landscape of conditionally dependent network interactions. We show that average controllability increases throughout a seizure and is negatively correlated with modal controllability throughout. Our results support the hypothesis that the energy required to drive the brain to a seizure-free state from an ictal state is smallest during seizure onset, yet we find that applying control energy at electrodes in the seizure onset zone may not always be energetically favorable. Our work suggests that a low-complexity model of time-evolving controllability may offer insights for developing and improving control strategies targeting seizure suppression.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere2006436118
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number5
StatePublished - Feb 2 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General


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