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Malformations of cortical development are structural abnormalities of the cerebral cortex (the grey matter that lines the surface of the brain), which arise due to the abnormal formation of the cerebral cortex in early (intrauterine) life. The precursor cells of the cerebral cortex are initially formed in the periventricular region, and then migrate to their correct location to form the normal structure and cell connections seen in the mature cerebral cortex. A variety of genes contribute to this process, and gene abnormalities, chromosome abnormalities or less commonly environmental factors (such as lack of oxygen to the developing brain or intrauterine infection) can interrupt normal cortical formation.

The important malformations of cortical development that are seen in patients with epilepsy are presented in this section of

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