Thalamic physiology of intentional essential tremor is more like cerebellar tremor than postural essential tremor

R. Zakaria, Frederick Lenz, S. Hua, B. H. Avin, C. C. Liu, Z. Mari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The neuronal physiological correlates of clinical heterogeneity in human essential tremor are unknown. We now test the hypothesis that thalamic neuronal and EMG activities during intention essential tremor are similar to those of the intention tremor which is characteristic of cerebellar lesions. Thalamic neuronal firing was studied in a cerebellar relay nucleus (ventral intermediate, Vim) and in a pallidal relay nucleus (ventral oral posterior, Vop) during stereotactic surgery for the treatment of tremor. Nine patients with essential tremor were divided clinically into two categories: one with a substantial component of tremor with intention (termed intention ET) and the other without (postural ET). These types of essential tremor were compared with patients having intention tremor plus other clinical signs of cerebellar disease (cerebellar tremor). Neurons in patients with either intention ET or cerebellar tremor had lower firing rates and lower spike×EMG coherence than those in patients with postural ET. Patients with intention ET had a lower spike×EMG phase lead than those with postural ET. Overall, thalamic activity measures of intention ET were different from postural ET but not apparently different from those of cerebellar tremor. One patient with the intention ET (number 4) had a good response to a left thalamotomy and then suffered a right cerebellar hemispheric infarct five years later. After the stroke the intention ET recurred, which is consistent with our hypothesis that intention ET is similar to that of the intention tremor which is characteristic of cerebellar lesions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)188-199
Number of pages12
JournalBrain Research
Volume1529
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 5 2013

Fingerprint

Essential Tremor
Tremor
Ventral Thalamic Nuclei
Cerebellar Diseases
Cerebellar Nuclei
Stroke
Neurons

Keywords

  • Essential tremor
  • Human thalamus
  • Intention tremor
  • Pacemaker
  • Single neuron analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Thalamic physiology of intentional essential tremor is more like cerebellar tremor than postural essential tremor. / Zakaria, R.; Lenz, Frederick; Hua, S.; Avin, B. H.; Liu, C. C.; Mari, Z.

In: Brain Research, Vol. 1529, 05.09.2013, p. 188-199.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Zakaria, R. ; Lenz, Frederick ; Hua, S. ; Avin, B. H. ; Liu, C. C. ; Mari, Z. / Thalamic physiology of intentional essential tremor is more like cerebellar tremor than postural essential tremor. In: Brain Research. 2013 ; Vol. 1529. pp. 188-199.
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