European Journal of Nuclear Medicine

, Volume 18, Issue 2, pp 111–118

Benzodiazepine receptors and cerebral blood flow in partial epilepsy


  • Peter Bartenstein
    • Department of Nuclear MedicineUniversity of Münster
  • Albert Ludolph
    • Department of NeurologyUniversity of Münster
  • Otmar Schober
    • Department of Nuclear MedicineUniversity of Münster
  • Gerhard Lottes
    • Department of Nuclear MedicineUniversity of Münster
  • Klemens Scheidhauer
    • Department of Nuclear MedicineUniversity of Münster
  • Joachim Sciuk
    • Department of Nuclear MedicineUniversity of Münster
  • Hans-Frieder Beer
    • Paul Scherrer Institut Villingen
Original Articles

DOI: 10.1007/BF00950756

Cite this article as:
Bartenstein, P., Ludolph, A., Schober, O. et al. Eur J Nucl Med (1991) 18: 111. doi:10.1007/BF00950756


It was the aim of this study to compare benzodiazepine (Bz) receptor binding and cerebral perfusion in patients with partial epilepsy. Single photon emission tomography (SPET) studies with the flow-marker technetium 99m hexamethylpropylene amine oxine (99mTc-HMPAO) and with the123I-labelled Bz-receptor ligand Ro 16-0154 (123I-Iomazenil) were performed in 12 patients with partial epilepsy, all with normal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computed tomography (CT) scans. The SPET studies with123I-Iomazenil were carried out 5 min and 2 h after injection. At 2 h the distribution of activity was very similar to the expected distribution of Bz-receptors in the human brain, known from positron emission tomography (PET) work and post-mortem studies. Early images showed a significantly higher tracer accumulation in the area of the basal ganglia, cerebellum, and naso-pharyngeal space. This finding is caused by non-specific binding and the contribution of the tracer in the blood pool in this phase. Also after 2 h p.i. of123I-Iomazenil, 9 of the 12 patients showed a focal decrease of of Bz-receptor binding. Ten patients had focal flow abnormalities with99mTc-HMPAO SPET. In 8 subjects impairment of flow was seen in sites of reduced123I-Iomazenil uptake.123I-Io-mazenil is suitable for Bz-receptor mapping. In this series of patients, Bz-receptor mapping with SPET seems to offer no advantage over99mTc-HMPAO in the detection of epileptic foci.

Key words

Partial epilepsySPETBenzodiazepine receptors

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1991