Deletion of Phospholipase C β1 in the Thalamic Reticular Nucleus Induces Absence Seizures

Bomi Chang, Junweon Byun, Ko Keun Kim, Seung Eun Lee, Boyoung Lee, Key Sun Kim, Hoon Ryu, Hee Sup Shin, Eunji Cheong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Absence seizures are caused by abnormal synchronized oscillations in the thalamocortical (TC) circuit, which result in widespread spike-and-wave discharges (SWDs) on electroencephalography (EEG) as well as impairment of consciousness. Thalamic reticular nucleus (TRN) and TC neurons are known to interact dynamically to generate TC circuitry oscillations during SWDs. Clinical studies have suggested the association of Plcβ1 with early-onset epilepsy, including absence seizures. However, the brain regions and circuit mechanisms related to the generation of absence seizures with Plcβ1 deficiency are unknown. In this study, we found that loss of Plcβ1 in mice caused spontaneous complex-type seizures, including convulsive and absence seizures. Importantly, TRN-specific deletion of Plcβ1 led to the development of only spontaneous SWDs, and no other types of seizures were observed.Ex vivo slice patch recording demonstrated that the number of spikes, an intrinsic TRN neuronal property, was significantly reduced in both tonic and burst firing modes in the absence of Plcβ1. We conclude that the loss of Plcβ1 in the TRN leads to decreased excitability and impairs normal inhibitory neuronal function, thereby disrupting feedforward inhibition of the TC circuitry, which is sufficient to cause hypersynchrony of the TC system and eventually leads to spontaneous absence seizures. Our study not only provides a novel mechanism for the induction of SWDs in Plcβ1 -deficient patients but also offers guidance for the development of diagnostic and therapeutic tools for absence epilepsy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)116-130
Number of pages15
JournalExperimental Neurobiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Apr 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by the Institute for Basic Science (IBS), Center for Cognition and Sociality (IBS-R001-D2).

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © Experimental Neurobiology 2022.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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