Aberrant sensory gating of the primary somatosensory cortex contributes to the motor circuit dysfunction in paroxysmal kinesigenic dyskinesia

Yo Tsen Liu, Yi Chieh Chen, Shang Yeong Kwan, Chien Chen Chou, Hsiang Yu Yu, Der Jen Yen, Kwong Kum Liao, Wei Ta Chen, Yung Yang Lin, Rou Shayn Chen, Kang Yang Jih, Shu Fen Lu, Yu Te Wu, Po Shan Wang, Fu Jung Hsiao*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Paroxysmal kinesigenic dyskinesia (PKD) is conventionally regarded as a movement disorder (MD) and characterized by episodic hyperkinesia by sudden movements. However, patients of PKD often have sensory aura and respond excellently to antiepileptic agents. PRRT2 mutations, the most common genetic etiology of PKD, could cause epilepsy syndromes as well. Standing in the twilight zone between MDs and epilepsy, the pathogenesis of PKD is unclear. Gamma oscillations arise from the inhibitory interneurons which are crucial in the thalamocortical circuits. The role of synchronized gamma oscillations in sensory gating is an important mechanism of automatic cortical inhibition. The patterns of gamma oscillations have been used to characterize neurophysiological features of many neurological diseases, including epilepsy and MDs. This study was aimed to investigate the features of gamma synchronizations in PKD. In the paired-pulse electrical-stimulation task, we recorded the magnetoencephalographic data with distributed source modeling and time-frequency analysis in 19 patients of newly-diagnosed PKD without receiving pharmacotherapy and 18 healthy controls. In combination with the magnetic resonance imaging, the source of gamma oscillations was localized in the primary somatosensory cortex. Somatosensory evoked fields of PKD patients had a reduced peak frequency (p < 0.001 for the first and the second response) and a prolonged peak latency (the first response p = 0.02, the second response p = 0.002), indicating the synchronization of gamma oscillation is significantly attenuated. The power ratio between two responses was much higher in the PKD group (p = 0.013), indicating the incompetence of activity suppression. Aberrant gamma synchronizations revealed the defective sensory gating of the somatosensory area contributes the pathogenesis of PKD. Our findings documented disinhibited cortical function is a pathomechanism common to PKD and epilepsy, thus rationalized the clinical overlaps of these two diseases and the therapeutic effect of antiepileptic agents for PKD. There is a greater reduction of the peak gamma frequency in PRRT2-related PKD than the non-PRRT PKD group (p = 0.028 for the first response, p = 0.004 for the second response). Loss-of-function PRRT2 mutations could lead to synaptic dysfunction. The disinhibiton change on neurophysiology reflected the impacts of PRRT2 mutations on human neurophysiology.

Original languageEnglish
Article number831
JournalFrontiers in Neurology
Issue numberOCT
StatePublished - 15 Oct 2018


  • Gamma oscillation
  • Magnetoencephalagraphy
  • Paroxysmal kinesigenic dyskinesia
  • Primary somatosensory cortex
  • PRRT2
  • Sensory gating


Dive into the research topics of 'Aberrant sensory gating of the primary somatosensory cortex contributes to the motor circuit dysfunction in paroxysmal kinesigenic dyskinesia'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this