Wiley LogoThis piece of news deals with seizures and the mode of prevention. Scientists from the University of Minnesota Medical School apparently found that light from diode i.e. UV LED decreased ‘seizure-like’ movement in a rat epilepsy model. In the study, UV light supposedly discharged gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA) from the ‘caged’ compound carbonyl amino butanoic acid (BC204). GABA then reduced the irregular electrical activity in the CA1 region of the brain. Outcomes of this study seem to have substantial possibility in treating focal epilepsy in humans.

Focal epilepsy is said to be exceedingly general in both adults and may also take place in children. It appears to be caused by an irregularity in a restricted region of the brain ensuing from conditions like stroke, trauma, or infections. Around one-third of epileptic patients supposedly do not respond to traditional medical therapies and are apparently subjugated to toxic effects from antiepileptic drugs (AEDs). Even though surgery seems to have gained a few patients suffering from focal epilepsy, a considerable amount of patients apparently do not undergo a total reduction following operation, thereby instigating study authors to look into optional treatments.

Steven Rothman, M.D., and colleagues supposedly performed experiments with UV LEDs to regulate seizure-like activity in rodent brain slices. Population spikes in CA1 which mirror the release of a population of neurons appear to be extracted by providing continuous present pulses via a microelectrode set in the CA3 brain region. Experts seem to stimulate seizure-like activity by including the convulsant, 4-aminopyridine and eliminating magnesium from the fluid solution further than the cells. Caged GABA, BC204, was supposedly perfused into the training for at least 30 minutes before the primary illumination.

When population spikes were gauged, the study team apparently discovered that illumination of control is said to cut with up to 200 mA LED current seemed to have no consequence on peak amplitudes. Adding BC204 and illumination by applying as little as 50 mA LED current apparently generated a statistically noteworthy drop of the peak of the population spike. Significantly, BC204 appeared to notably decrease the slice spikes and bursting provoked by the 4-AP and low magnesium.

Dr. Rothman, commented, “Our strongly positive results, in an epilepsy model far more severe than the naturally occurring disease, suggest that this technique could translate to human epilepsy.”

Study authors are of the opinion that a programmable pump may provide the imprisoned GABA into the subarachnoid space over the epileptic region of the brain. UV LEDs may then be responsively triggered to discharge the GABA, by means of methods identical to those used for cortical stimulation units that are presently in clinical trials. The experts are positive that an LED-based implantable device could be viable.

The study was published in the January 2010 issue of Epilepsia, a journal published by Wiley-Blackwell on behalf of the International League Against Epilepsy.