Epilepsy Research News -- ScienceDaily
Seizures begin with a muffle
Contrary to long-held assumptions, researchers find that some seizures start after a burst from neurons that inhibit brain activity.
Risk of dying during pregnancy is five times higher for women with epilepsy
The risk of dying during pregnancy is negligible for the average Danish woman, but if the woman in question has epilepsy, the probability must be multiplied by five, according to a comprehensive epidemiological study.
New screening tool can improve the quality of life for epilepsy patients with sleep apnea
Researchers have developed a tool to help neurologists screen for obstructive sleep apnea in people with epilepsy whose seizures can be magnified by sleep disorders.
Understanding epilepsy in pediatric tumors
Researchers have identified a neuronal BRAF somatic mutation that causes intrinsic epileptogenicity in pediatric brain tumors.
Electronic device implanted in the brain could stop seizures
Researchers have successfully demonstrated how an electronic device implanted directly into the brain can detect, stop and even prevent epileptic seizures.
Heart-brain connection could be predictive biomarker for epilepsy
Heartbeat irregularities connected to brain activity abnormalities may lead to the ability to predict eventual epileptic seizures in subjects who suffered physical or infectious brain insults, according to Penn State researchers who studied mouse models of cerebral malaria, which often causes epilepsy in those who survive.
Heart abnormalities may trigger sudden unexplained death in epilepsy
Patients with a rare disease called Dravet syndrome are at heightened risk for sudden unexplained death in epilepsy. Researchers are using stem cells to identify the effects of a gene mutation on the heart, which may lead to fatal arrhythmias.
Automated detection of focal epileptic seizures in a sentinel area of the human brain
In a first-in-humans pilot study, researchers have identified a sentinel area of the brain that may give an early warning before clinical seizure manifestations from focal epilepsy appear. They have also validated an algorithm that can automatically detect that early warning. These two findings offer the possibility of squelching a focal epilepsy seizure -- before the patient feels any symptoms -- through neurostimulation of the sentinel area of the brain.
Brain proteins, patterns reveal clues to understanding epilepsy
Researchers have identified which brain proteins might be most influential in controlling neural activity associated with epilepsy and anxiety, paving the way for better prevention and treatments someday.
Crowdsourcing algorithms to predict epileptic seizures
A study reveals clinically relevant epileptic seizure prediction is possible in a wider range of patients than previously thought, thanks to the crowdsourcing of more than 10,000 algorithms worldwide.
Content of illicit cannabis extracts used to treat children with epilepsy revealed
A pioneering study has found carers who turned to medicinal cannabis to treat children with epilepsy overwhelmingly (75 percent) considered the extracts as 'effective'.
Absence epilepsy: When the brain is like 'an orchestra without a conductor'
New contributions to the field of epilepsy have opened a window into the cellular events that occur in the brain during absence seizures.
Prediction method for epileptic seizures developed
Engineers have developed a machine-learning and AI-powered algorithm to predict the onset of epileptic seizures.
Early-life seizures prematurely wake up brain networks tied to autism
Early-life seizures prematurely switch on key synapses in the brain that may contribute to further neurodevelopmental delay in children with autism and other intellectual disabilities, suggests a new study from researchers at Penn Medicine.
Gut bacteria play key role in anti-seizure effects of ketogenic diet
Scientists have identified specific gut bacteria that play an essential role in the anti-seizure effects of the ketogenic diet. The study is the first to establish a causal link between seizure susceptibility and the gut microbiota -- the 100-trillion-or-so bacteria and other microbes that reside in our intestines.
Cannabidiol significantly reduces seizures in patients with severe form of epilepsy
Cannabidiol (CBD), a compound derived from the cannabis plant that does not produce a 'high,' was shown in a new large-scale, randomized, controlled trial to significantly reduce the number of dangerous seizures in patients with a severe form of epilepsy called Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. This study also is the first to offer information on cannabidiol dosing for patients with treatment-resistant epilepsy.
Red Sea fungus yields leads for new epilepsy drugs
New treatments for epilepsy are sorely needed because current medications don't work for many people with the disease. To find new leads, researchers have now turned to the sea -- a source of unique natural products that have been largely untapped for prospective drugs. The scientists report that two metabolites produced by a fungus from the Red Sea look promising.
Possibility of new ways to treat, manage epilepsy seizures
New findings demonstrate that there may be ways to address blood-brain barrier dysfunction in epilepsy.
New method to discover drugs to treat epilepsy
For more than a third of children living with epilepsy, the currently approved medications do not stop their seizures. Researchers have developed a new drug screening method to discover drugs to treat epilepsy.
Cysticercosis epidemiology in Spain: What's new?
Cysticercosis, an infection caused by larval cysts of a pork tapeworm, is a leading cause of seizures and epilepsy in many parts of the world. Now, researchers have for the first time assessed the impact of cysticercosis hospitalizations in Spain.
Prescribing antipsychotic medication for children with autism
A new study has suggested that children with intellectual difficulty or autism are more likely to be given antipsychotic medication from a younger age than those without intellectual disability and have higher rates of hospitalisation for depression and for injury and also are at risk of other medical side effects.
Epilepsy drug exposure in womb is linked to poorer school test results, study reveals
Researchers have found that exposure to epilepsy drugs in the womb is linked to significantly poorer school test results among 7-year-olds.
'Missing mutation' found in severe infant epilepsy
Researchers have discovered a 'missing mutation' in severe infant epilepsy -- long-suspected genetic changes that might trigger overactive, brain-damaging electrical signaling leading to seizures. They also found early indications that specific anti-seizure medications might prevent disabling brain injury by controlling epilepsy during a crucial period shortly after birth.
Epilepsy: Biologists link protein, seizure suppression
Seizure suppression is the focus of an original research -- and they have the pictures to prove it. Their new work sheds new light on epilepsy, a chronic neurological disorder marked by recurrent, unprovoked seizures.
Reducing side effects in commonly used drugs
New research has drilled down to the molecular level to find similarities across six pharmaceutical drugs used in pain relief, dentist anesthetic, and treatment of epilepsy, in a bid to find a way to reduce unwanted side-effects.
Specific set of nerve cells controls epileptic seizures' spread through brain
Experimental activation of a small set of nerve cells in the brain prevents convulsive seizures in a mouse model of temporal lobe epilepsy, the most common form of epilepsy among human adults.
Can learning stress-reducing techniques help reduce seizures?
Learning techniques to help manage stress may help people with epilepsy reduce how often they have seizures, according to a new study.
Which commonly prescribed drug is more effective for infants with epilepsy?
Levetiracetam was found to be superior to phenobarbital as initial monotherapy for infants with nonsyndromic epilepsy.
Apgar scores in neonates predict risk of CP and epilepsy
An infant’s scores on the so-called Apgar scale can predict the risk of a later diagnosis of cerebral palsy or epilepsy. The risk rises with decreasing  Apgar score, but even slightly lowered scores can be linked to a higher risk of these diagnoses, according to an extensive observational study.
Engineer locates brain's seizure onset zone in record time
An engineer can locate the brain's zone that creates seizures in record time -- one hour rather than the typical ten days. The new method potentially reduces complications, time and money.
Tickling the brain with electrical stimulation improves memory
Tickling the brain with low-intensity electrical stimulation in a specific area can improve verbal short-term memory.
Cannabidiol may help to reduce seizures for people with treatment-resistant form of epilepsy, study suggests
Treatment with a pharmaceutical formulation of cannabidiol alongside other anti-epilepsy treatments helped to reduce the number of drop seizures -- seizures which involve sudden falls due to loss of muscle tone -- in people with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome who did not respond to previous treatment, according to a recent phase 3 randomized clinical trial.
Epilepsy linked to brain volume and thickness differences
Epilepsy is associated with thickness and volume differences in the grey matter of several brain regions, according to new research. The largest-ever neuroimaging study of people with epilepsy, shows that epilepsy involves more widespread physical differences than previously assumed, even in types of epilepsy that are typically considered to be more benign if seizures are under control.
Are there signs of CTE in the brain tissue of younger people with epilepsy?
Younger adults with difficult-to-treat epilepsy may have early signs of chronic traumatic encephalopathy in their brain tissue, but it appears to be uncommon, according to a small, preliminary study.
Epileptic seizures and depression may share a common genetic cause, study suggests
From the time of Hippocrates, physicians have suspected a link between epilepsy and depression. Now, for the first time, scientists have found evidence that seizures and mood disorders such as depression may share the same genetic cause in some people with epilepsy, which may lead to better screening and treatment to improve patients' quality of life.
Monthly brain cycles predict seizures in patients with epilepsy
Neurologists have discovered monthly cycles of brain activity linked to seizures in patients with epilepsy. The finding suggests it may soon be possible for clinicians to identify when patients are at highest risk for seizures, allowing patients to plan around these brief but potentially dangerous events.
Topiramate in early pregnancy increases risk of oral clefts
A new study suggests that using topiramate in early pregnancy, particularly at the high doses used for epilepsy, increases the risk of oral clefts.
Brain waves may predict and potentially prevent epilepsy
The findings demonstrate how using EEGs to identify changes in brain wave patterns over time can predict which post-injury patients will develop epilepsy.
Presurgical imaging may predict whether epilepsy surgery will work
A statistical approach to combining presurgical PET scans and functional MRI of the brain may help predict which patients with drug-resistant epilepsy are most likely to benefit from surgery.
Rheumatoid arthritis during pregnancy may increase chronic disease risk in children
New research reveals that children born to women with rheumatoid arthritis face an increased susceptibility for certain chronic diseases.
Seizure study sheds light on lasting brain effects in children
Prolonged convulsive seizures in childhood could be linked to the development of other brain conditions, a study suggests.
Eight new epilepsy genes discovered
A new study examining 200 children with epileptic encephalopathy – epilepsy combined with intellectual or overall developmental disability –identified eight new genes involved in this type of epilepsy thanks to their use of whole-genome sequencing, which had never been done before in an epileptic study of this scope.
Inexplicable spasms can now be explained with hormones
Too low a level of a hormone in the blood which protects against stress may be the cause of epilepsy-like seizures which doctors had otherwise believed had solely psychological causes. New research results may help to improve the diagnosis and treatment of an otherwise mystifying disorder.
Largest ever collection of patient data of inherited epilepsy conditions
Researchers have joined up with five other centers from around the world to compile the biggest recorded collection of families with forms of epilepsy where genetics may play a part in the recurring feature of the condition.
Wristband devices detect dangerous seizures in patients with epilepsy
New research indicates that wristband devices may improve the detection and characterization of seizures in patients with epilepsy.
New method to dampen nerve signals
Researchers have discovered a previously unknown molecular binding site that can influence electrical impulses in nerves. The discovery opens the possibility of designing new types of drugs against conditions such as epilepsy.
Mechanism explains how seizures may lead to memory loss
A team of researchers reveals a mechanism that can explain how even relatively infrequent seizures can lead to long-lasting cognitive deficits in animal models.
Lack of CLOCK protein appears key in severe epilepsy forms
Some children with epilepsy lack a protein called CLOCK, which appears to disrupt the inhibition of excitatory neurons in the brain region where their seizures originate, a new study has found.
Cannabidiol benefits and mechanisms shown in mouse study of Dravet syndrome
Cannabidiol, a non-intoxicating derivative from cannabis, has been shown to reduce seizures and autism-like behaviors in a mouse model of a genetic disorder, Dravet syndrome. Children with this devastating condition have difficult-to-treat epilepsy, cognitive impairments, and problems with social interactions. The researchers also studied how therapeutic effects of cannabidiol relate to changes in signaling between certain brain neurons.
Cooling treatment reduces epilepsy in children
Cooling babies deprived of oxygen at birth (perinatal asphyxia) can reduce the number of children who develop epilepsy later in childhood, according to a new study.
Stimuli fading away en route to consciousness
Whether or not we consciously perceive the stimuli projected onto our retina is decided in our brain. A recent study shows how some signals dissipate along the processing path to conscious perception. This process begins at rather late stages of signal processing. By contrast, in earlier stages there is hardly any difference in the reaction of neurons to conscious and unconscious stimuli.
Local epileptic seizure shows long distance interaction
An epileptic seizure may be highly local, but it also influences brain activity at a distance of over ten centimeters from the core. This, in turn, affects the active area, scientists report.
Memory decline after head injury may be prevented by slowing brain cell growth
Scientists say a new study indicates that the excessive burst of new brain cells after a traumatic head injury that researchers have traditionally believed helped in recovery could instead lead to epileptic seizures and long-term cognitive decline.
Brain activity between seizures informs potential treatment for childhood absence epilepsy
New research shows that in a mouse model of childhood absence epilepsy, brain activity is perturbed between seizures. The researchers speculate that this could underlie cognitive problems of the disease, which can persist despite treatment of seizures.
Brain regions most likely to cause epilepsy seizures
Scientists have developed a new way to detect which areas of the brain contribute most greatly to epilepsy seizures, according to a new study. The strategy could help surgeons select specific brain areas for removal to stop seizures.
Estrogen-mediated brain protection directly linked to intake of fatty acids found in oils
Scientists are increasingly appreciating estrogen's role in brain health. The latest research connecting DHA synthesis to estrogen production, and consequentially brain health, backs up further the old adage that a daily intake of fish oil is good for you.
Compound derived from marijuana interacts with antiepileptic drugs
New research suggests that an investigational neurological treatment derived from cannabis may alter the blood levels of commonly used antiepileptic drugs.
In the test tube instead of under the knife
New forms of diagnosis and therapy for temporal lobe epilepsy have now been revealed by a team of neuroscientists.
Collaboration between pet owners, vets and researchers helps dogs and children with a rare and severe epilepsy
New hope is being given to children who suffer from a rare and severe form of epilepsy, thanks to new, unique research.
Genetic testing helps detect cause of early life epilepsy
A new study supports routine genetic testing for initial evaluation of seizures as the first step toward precision medicine and improved outcomes.
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