Korean J Pathol.  1998 May;32(5):328-336.

Synaptic Reorganization of Dentate Mossy Fibers and Expression of Calcium Binding Proteins in Hippocampal Sclerosis of Temporal Lobe Epilepsy

  • 1Department of Pathology and Institute for Medical Science, Keimyung University School of Medicine, Taegu, Korea.


This study was designed to identify expression of calcium-binding proteins and synaptic reorganizations of dentate mossy fibers in hippocampal sclerosis of human temporal lobe epilepsy. Hippocampal neuronal density was quantitively analyzed in temporal lobe epilepsy group (n=50) to investigate the degree of hippocampal sclerosis and it was compared with that of autopsy control (n=3). To verify the distribution of calcium-binding proteins in neurons of epileptic hippocampi, the parvalbumin (PV)-immunoreactive and calbindin-D28K (CB)-immunoreactive neurons were quantitively analyzed in each area of Ammon's horn by immunohistochemical stain. Also, to clarify synaptic reorganizations of the dentate mossy fibers, a part of each hippocampus was examined under light microscopy and transmission electron microscopy using Timm sulphide silver method. In epileptic hippocampi, severity of hippocampal sclerosis (HS) was graded four, which consisted of 3 cases with no HS, 6 mild HS, 12 moderate HS, and 29 severe HS. The hippocampal neuronal loss was most prominent in CA1, followed by CA4 and CA2. Expression of calcium-binding proteins was more prevalent in CA2 of all groups. The proportion of PV-immunoreactive neurons in CA1 and CA4 significantly increased in the moderate and severe HS group, whereas the proportion of CB-immunoreactive neurons did not correlated with the severity of HS. Timm granules were noted in inner molecular supragranular layer of dentate gyrus of epileptic hippocampi and they tended to increase in proportion along with the severity of hippocampal sclerosis. Transmission electron microscopy showed that supragranular Timm granules corresponded to synaptic terminals of mossy fibers. These results suggest that parvalbumin appears to have more protective effect against neuronal loss and that mossy fiber synaptic reorganization seems to play a major role in pathogenesis of hippocampal sclerosis of human temporal lobe epilepsy.


Temporal lobe epilepsy; Hippocampal sclerosis; Calcium-binding protein; Timm granule; Mossy fiber synaptic reorganization

MeSH Terms

Calbindin 1
Calcium-Binding Proteins*
Dentate Gyrus
Epilepsy, Temporal Lobe*
Microscopy, Electron, Transmission
Nerve Fibers, Myelinated
Presynaptic Terminals
Temporal Lobe*
Calcium-Binding Proteins
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