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January 24, 2022

The Cameron Boyce Foundation and CURE Epilepsy Partner to Fund New SUDEP Research

The Cameron Boyce Foundation and CURE Epilepsy have again joined forces to award The CURE Epilepsy Cameron Boyce SUDEP Research Award.

January 21, 2022

Discovery of Genetic Variants Linked to Febrile Seizures

Article published in Statens Serum Institut News, original research published in Brain A large-scale case-control study implicates genes critical for fever response and genes for communication between nerve cells. It is usually an unexpected and frightening experience for parents when their child has a febrile seizure. Occurring in 3-5% of infants febrile seizures are the most common type of abnormal brain activity during childhood. While most febrile seizures are benign and self-limiting with no recurrence, about 7% of children with febrile seizures will later develop epilepsy. Now, a new international genetic study led by researchers from Statens Serum Institut (SSI) in Copenhagen and conducted in collaboration with other research groups in Denmark and Australia have identified seven novel regions of the genome linked to febrile seizures in the largest case-control study reported for this common childhood disorder. The research has just been published in the leading international neurological journal Brain. Genes related to fever response The researchers analyzed variants in the DNA of 7,635 children from Denmark and Australia, who had experienced one or more episodes of febrile seizures. They also analyzed a control group of 83,966 children without febrile seizures. Almost 7 million genetic variants were interrogated and the study identified seven new gene regions robustly linked to increased risk of developing febrile seizures. The study also confirmed four previously known genetic associations for febrile seizures established by the same team in 2014. Two of the new regions contained genes of major importance in the development of fevers in mammals. For one gene, called PTGER3, the mechanism has been elucidated in mouse experiments. When this gene was silenced in a specific brain region called the median preoptic nucleus, the mice were unable to develop fevers. Another gene called IL10 encodes a signaling molecule that normally functions to suppress fevers. Dr. Bjarke Feenstra, a senior researcher and group leader at Statens Serum Institut in Denmark, who was the lead author of the study, said: “The connections to fever response are intriguing. We hypothesize that genetic changes that affect the way the PTGER3 and IL10 genes function may lead to a more pronounced fever response, which in turn could increase the susceptibility of children to febrile seizures”.

January 20, 2022

Epilepsy and Memory: Why Some People Have Trouble Distinguishing Past from Present

A study published recently in the Journal of Neuroscience provides a remarkable finding that may help physicians diagnose epilepsy before the first seizure: People with temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) have difficulty distinguishing the present from the past.

January 20, 2022

CURE Epilepsy Impact: Investing in Early-Stage Investigators Advances Careers & Leads to Groundbreaking Epilepsy Treatments

Gregory Worrell, MD, PhD, recalls his first grant from CURE Epilepsy and credits it with having a tremendous impact on both his career path and his groundbreaking contributions to epilepsy research.

January 19, 2022

Brivaracetam (Briviact®) Prevents the Development of Epileptiform Activity When Administered Early After Cortical Neurotrauma in Rats

There is no effective therapy to prevent the development of posttraumatic epilepsy (PTE). Recently, we reported that administration of the antiseizure medication (ASM) levetiracetam (LEV) shortly after trauma prevented the development of epileptiform activity in two experimental models of neurotrauma.

January 19, 2022

Epilepsy Research Boosts Case for New Gene Therapy

Research from the UVA School of Medicine suggests how a newly developed gene therapy can treat Dravet syndrome, a severe form of epilepsy, and potentially prolong survival for people with the condition.

January 18, 2022

The Worldwide Epilepsy Treatment Gap: A Systematic Review and Recommendations for Revised Definitions – A Report from the ILAE Epidemiology Commission

In order to more appropriately apply and understand the “epilepsy treatment gap” (ETG) concept in current health systems, revised conceptual and operational definitions of ETG are timely and necessary. This article therefore systematically reviews worldwide studies of the ETG, distinguishing high-, middle-, and low-income regions, and provides recommendations for an updated International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE) definition of ETG.

January 18, 2022

Harnessing the Brain’s Plasticity to Acquire Epilepsy Resilience

A research group led by professor Ko Matsui from the Super-network Brain Physiology Lab at Tohoku University reported on a stimulation paradigm used on experimental animals that could potentially cultivate resilience to epilepsy.

January 14, 2022

UTA-Developed Headset Detects Seizure

An assistant professor at The University of Texas at Arlington has developed a wearable headset that detects when epilepsy patients are having seizures and records data that doctors can monitor and review.

January 14, 2022

Racial Disparities in Medication Adherence Barriers: Pediatric Epilepsy as an Exemplar

To evaluate how racial disparities in medication adherence barriers relate to key clinical outcomes (i.e., seizure control and adherence) in pediatric epilepsy and to identify the most critical barriers in determining health outcomes in Black youth and White youth.

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January 13, 2022

Epilepsy Research News: January 2022

This month we highlight new research advancing our knowledge of epilepsy genetics, epilepsy risk factors, new treatment targets, and more. 

January 11, 2022

Proposal for an Updated Seizure Classification Framework in Clinical Trials

The International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE) seizure classification scheme has been periodically updated to improve its reliability and applicability to clinicians and researchers alike. Here, members of the Epilepsy Study Consortium propose a pragmatic seizure classification.

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