Quest Awards, Funded by the Matthew Siravo Memorial
Kinase Mediation Of Antiepileptic Drug Action
Nicholas Poolos, MD, PhD
University of Washington, Seattle, WA
Many of the antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) in clinical use today have mechanisms of action that remain unclear. One AED in particular, lamotrigine, appears to lack a direct action on the ion channel (the HCN channel) that may be responsible for its effectiveness across a broad spectrum of seizure types. Dr. Poolos will investigate the novel hypothesis that lamotrigine may regulate HCN channels not by direct interaction, but instead by altering the behavior of intracellular enzymes (kinases) that in turn control ion channel activity. If this hypothesis is proven, it will suggest new pathways for development of improved drugs against epilepsy.