Malformations of Cortical Development

Renzo Guerrini, Francesco Zellini

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Abnormal cortical development represents a major cause of epilepsy. Most such abnormalities may now be detected using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), although some remain undetectable even with the best imaging techniques. The largest malformation groups express different perturbations of developmental stages and carry a variable propensity to epileptogenesis, preservation or reorganization of cortical function and for atypical cortical organization. Some patients have obvious neurological impairment, whereas others show unexpected deficits that are detectable only by screening. Drug-resistant epilepsy is frequent but might be amenable to surgical treatment in some patients. Surgical planning should be based on assessments of structural, and if possible functional imaging, as well as clinical and electrographic features. Most malformations of cortical development are caused by genetic defects and brain imaging has been instrumental to the identification of causative genes. Nowadays many patients with epilepsy due to malformations of cortical development can be offeredgenetic counseling.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNeuroimaging in Epilepsy
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Print)9780199863617, 9780195342765
Publication statusPublished - Nov 23 2010


  • Cortical dysplasia
  • Epilepsy
  • Genetics
  • Heterotopia
  • Lissencephaly
  • Magnetic resonance imaging
  • Neuronal migration
  • Polymicrogyria
  • Seizures cognitive impairment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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