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Multi-modal characterization of the subcortical involvement in focal epilepsy

Project description

A precise mapping of subcortical changes in focal epilepsy

Focal epilepsy is a neurological disease characterized by seizures that start in one or multiple regions and then rapidly spread across the brain. A lot of research has focused on the outer gray matter, but we now know that also the inner, subcortical brain structures are involved in seizure activities. Still, the exact impact of focal epilepsy on the subcortical gray matter has remained relatively understudied. With the support of the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions programme, the SUCCEED project will use high-resolution and multimodal imaging data acquired with 7 Tesla MRI to characterize subcortical alterations in focal epilepsy patients.


Focal epilepsy is a chronic neurological disorder characterized by repeated spontaneous seizures that originate from one or several confined regions. After onset, these seizures often propagate towards networks of regions spread across the brain, negatively affecting whole-brain dynamics and cognitive functioning in these patients. Despite evidence advocating the involvement of subcortical areas in seizure organisation in some patients, the exact mechanisms are still poorly understood. Therefore, I anticipate that multimodal, high resolution characterization of the subcortex using 7 Tesla MRI data provides an important, missing link to enhance our understanding of changes within, and differences between focal epilepsy patients. I will explore this in three aims that focus on network integrity, tissue integrity and disease heterogeneity. Successful completion of the objectives is maximized by a two-way transfer of knowledge by combining my proficiency in quantitative brain mapping and computational neuroimaging with the host’s expertise related to brain network analyses in epilepsy. Together these techniques provide a platform for ‘SUbCortical Characterization to Enhance Epilepsy Differentiation’ (SUCCEED) and will advance the development of non-invasive subcortical biomarkers towards personalized diagnosis and treatment of focal epilepsy. Results will be communicated to the scientific and non-scientific public through scientific publications, conference presentations, via Twitter, workshops and open days. With the host lab situated at the forefront of epilepsy research, it will provide the ideal environment to improve my scientific network, and receive the relevant technical and personal training. Together with the innovative and interdisciplinary nature of the project, this will give me the unique opportunity to mature further towards an independent researcher both during and after the fellowship.

Funding Scheme



Net EU contribution
€ 211 754,88
Boulevard charles livon 58 le pharo
13284 Marseille

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Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur Bouches-du-Rhône
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
EU contribution
No data