Health
9:46 am
Fri June 21, 2013

Duke Researchers One Step Closer To Epilepsy Treatment

A magnified microscopic image from Duke researchers in the epilepsy study.
A magnified microscopic image from Duke researchers.
Credit Duke University

Researchers at Duke University say they're another step closer to creating preventative treatment for epilepsy.  A study released Thursday says scientists controlled a particular receptor in the brains of mice linked to epileptic seizures.  They were able to stop the development of permanent epilepsy, even after the mice experienced a series of seizures.  Jim McNamara is a Duke neuroscience professor and lead author of the study.  He says the receptor could be a target for future drugs to prevent epilepsy in humans.

"Ideally, what you would like is to be able to intervene for a brief period of time and have that intervention be effective for prevention, because you can minimize unwanted effects of the drug," McNamara said. "You don't have to be on the drug for the rest of your life."



McNamara says researchers still need to determine how long after seizures that preventative treatment remains effective.  The report appears in the latest edition of the journal, "Neuron."