Subunit composition of glutamate and gamma-aminobutyric acid receptors in status epilepticus.
ABSTRACT: PURPOSE:To describe the subunit composition of glutamate and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptors in brain tissue from patients with different types of status epilepticus. PATIENTS AND METHODS:The subunit composition of glutamate and GABA receptors was analyzed in: (1) surgical brain samples from three patients with refractory convulsive status epilepticus, three patients with electrical status epilepticus in sleep, and six patients with refractory epilepsy, and (2) brain autopsy samples from four controls who died without neurological disorders. Subunit expression was quantified with Western blotting and messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) expression was quantified with reverse polymerase chain reaction. RESULTS:Western blot analysis demonstrated the following patterns (as compared to controls): (1) alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptors: elevated GluA1/GluA2 ratio in electrical status epilepticus in sleep (465%±119) and refractory epilepsy (329%±125; p<0.01); (2) N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptors: increased GluN2B/GluN2A ratio in electrical status epilepticus in sleep (3682%±1000) and refractory convulsive status epilepticus (3520%±751; p<0.05); (3) GABA receptors: elevated ?2/?1 ratio in refractory epilepsy (321%±138; p<0.05) and refractory convulsive status epilepticus (346%±74; p<0.05); and (4) patients with underlying malformation of cortical development had increased ratios in GluA1/GluA2 (382%±149; p<0.01), GluN2B/GluN2A (3321%±1581; p<0.05) and ?2/?1 (303%±86; p<0.01). Quantification of mRNA demonstrated an elevated GABRA2/GABRA1 ratio in refractory epilepsy (712; p<0.05) as compared to controls. CONCLUSIONS:The subunit composition of glutamate and GABA receptors in patients with status epilepticus mirrors that found in animal models of refractory status epilepticus and may promote self-sustaining seizures. Receptor subunit changes may provide additional targets for improved treatment.
Project description:Objective:Convulsive status epilepticus can exert profound cardiovascular effects in adults including ventricular depolarization-repolarization abnormalities. Whether status epilepticus adversely affects ventricular electrical properties in children is less understood. Therefore, we sought to characterize ventricular alterations and the associated clinical factors in children following convulsive status epilepticus. Methods:We conducted a 2-year retrospective, case-control study. Children between 1 month and 21 years of age were included if they were admitted to the pediatric intensive care unit with primary diagnosis of convulsive status epilepticus and had 12-lead electrocardiogram (ECG) within 24 hours of admission. Children with heart disease, ion channelopathy, or on vasoactive medications were excluded. Age-matched control subjects had no history of seizures or epilepsy. The primary outcome was ventricular abnormalities represented by ST segment changes, abnormal T wave, QRS axis deviation, and corrected QT (QTc) interval prolongation. The secondary outcomes included QT/RR relationship, beat-to-beat QTc interval variability, ECG interval measurement between groups, and clinical factors associated with ECG abnormalities. Results:Of 317 eligible children, 59 met the inclusion criteria. History of epilepsy was present in 31 children (epileptic) and absent in 28 children (non-epileptic). Compared with the control subjects (n = 31), the status epilepticus groups were more likely to have an abnormal ECG with overall odds ratio of 3.8 and 7.0 for the non-epileptic and the epileptic groups respectively. Simple linear regression analysis demonstrated that children with epilepsy exhibited impaired dependence and adaptation of the QT interval on heart rate. Beat-to-beat QTc interval variability, a marker of ventricular repolarization instability, was increased in children with epilepsy. Significance:Convulsive status epilepticus can adversely affect ventricular electrical properties and stability in children, especially those with epilepsy. These findings suggest that children with epilepsy may be particularly vulnerable to seizure-induced arrhythmias. Therefore postictal cardiac surveillance may be warranted in this population.
Project description:GABA-A receptors play a pivotal role in many brain diseases. Epilepsy is caused by acquired conditions and genetic defects in GABA receptor channels regulating neuronal excitability in the brain. The latter is referred to as GABA channelopathies. In the last two decades, major advances have been made in the genetics of epilepsy. The presence of specific GABAergic genetic abnormalities leading to some of the classic epileptic syndromes has been identified. Advances in molecular cloning and recombinant systems have helped characterize mutations in GABA-A receptor subunit genes in clinical neurology. GABA-A receptors are the prime targets for neurosteroids (NSs). However, GABA-A receptors are not static but undergo rapid changes in their number or composition in response to the neuroendocrine milieu. This review describes the recent advances in the genetic and neuroendocrine control of extrasynaptic and synaptic GABA-A receptors in epilepsy and its impact on neurologic conditions. It highlights the current knowledge of GABA genetics in epilepsy, with an emphasis on the neuroendocrine regulation of extrasynaptic GABA-A receptors in network excitability and seizure susceptibility. Recent advances in molecular regulation of extrasynaptic GABA-A receptor-mediated tonic inhibition are providing unique new therapeutic approaches for epilepsy, status epilepticus, and certain brain disorders. The discovery of an extrasynaptic molecular mechanism represents a milestone for developing novel therapies such as NS replacement therapy for catamenial epilepsy.
Project description:OBJECTIVE:To address the question: does non-convulsive status epilepticus warrant the same aggressive treatment as convulsive status epilepticus? METHODS:We used a decision model to evaluate the risks and benefits of treating non-convulsive status epilepticus with intravenous anesthetics and ICU-level aggressive care. We investigated how the decision to use aggressive versus non-aggressive management for non-convulsive status epilepticus impacts expected patient outcome for four etiologies: absence epilepsy, discontinued antiepileptic drugs, intraparenchymal hemorrhage, and hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy. Each etiology was defined by distinct values for five key parameters: baseline mortality rate of the inciting etiology; efficacy of non-aggressive treatment in gaining control of seizures; the relative contribution of seizures to overall mortality; the degree of excess disability expected in the case of delayed seizure control; and the mortality risk of aggressive treatment. RESULTS:Non-aggressive treatment was favored for etiologies with low morbidity and mortality such as absence epilepsy and discontinued antiepileptic drugs. The risk of aggressive treatment was only warranted in etiologies where there was significant risk of seizure-induced neurologic damage. In the case of post-anoxic status epilepticus, expected outcomes were poor regardless of the treatment chosen. The favored strategy in each case was determined by strong interactions of all five model parameters. CONCLUSIONS:Determination of the optimal management approach to non-convulsive status epilepticus is complex and is ultimately determined by the inciting etiology.
Project description:Succinic semialdehyde dehydrogenase (SSADH) deficiency, a disorder of GABA degradation with subsequent elevations in brain GABA and GHB, is a neurometabolic disorder with intellectual disability, epilepsy, hypotonia, ataxia, sleep disorders, and psychiatric disturbances. Neuroimaging reveals increased T2-weighted MRI signal usually affecting the globus pallidus, cerebellar dentate nucleus, and subthalamic nucleus, and often cerebral and cerebellar atrophy. EEG abnormalities are usually generalized spike-wave, consistent with a predilection for generalized epilepsy. The murine phenotype is characterized by failure-to-thrive, progressive ataxia, and a transition from generalized absence to tonic-clonic to ultimately fatal convulsive status epilepticus. Binding and electrophysiological studies demonstrate use-dependent downregulation of GABA(A) and (B) receptors in the mutant mouse. Translational human studies similarly reveal downregulation of GABAergic activity in patients, utilizing flumazenil-PET and transcranial magnetic stimulation for GABA(A) and (B) activity, respectively. Sleep studies reveal decreased stage REM with prolonged REM latencies and diminished percentage of stage REM. An ad libitum ketogenic diet was reported as effective in the mouse model, with unclear applicability to the human condition. Acute application of SGS-742, a GABA(B) antagonist, leads to improvement in epileptiform activity on electrocorticography. Promising mouse data using compounds available for clinical use, including taurine and SGS-742, form the framework for human trials.
Project description:GABA is the major inhibitory transmitter at CNS synapses. Changes in subunit composition of the pentameric GABA(A) receptor, including increased levels of alpha4 subunit in dentate granule cells and associated functional alterations such as increased zinc blockade of GABA currents, are hypothesized to be critical components of epileptogenesis. Here, we report that the minimal promoter of the human alpha4 subunit gene (GABRA4p), when used to drive reporter gene expression from adeno-associated viral vectors, controls condition-specific up-regulation in response to status epilepticus, defining a transcriptional mechanism for seizure-induced changes in levels of alpha4 subunit containing GABA(A) receptors. Transfection studies in primary hippocampal neurons show that inducible early growth response factor 3 (Egr3) up-regulates GABRA4p activity as well as the levels of endogenous alpha4 subunits. Given that Egr3 knockout mice display approximately 50% less GABRA4 mRNAs in the hippocampus and that increases in alpha4 and Egr3 mRNAs in response to pilocarpine-induced status epilepticus are accompanied by increased binding of Egr3 to GABRA4 in dentate granule cells, our findings support a role for Egr3 as a major regulator of GABRA4 in developing neurons and in epilepsy.
Project description:Super-refractory status epilepticus is a life-threatening condition. Resistance to benzodiazepine and barbiturate treatment for this disorder is thought to be due to internalization of synaptic ?-aminobutyric acid (GABA)A receptors, and withdrawal of benzodiazepines and barbiturates during treatment often triggers seizure recurrence. The neurosteroid allopregnanolone acts as a positive allosteric modulator of synaptic and extrasynaptic GABAA receptors. Here we describe the use of allopregnanolone in 2 pediatric patients with super-refractory status epilepticus. This treatment allowed the general anesthetic infusions to be weaned with resolution of status epilepticus. This is the first report of allopregnanolone use to treat status epilepticus in children.
Project description:To describe behavioural and psychiatric outcomes of children within 10 years of convulsive status epilepticus (CSE).Children originally identified by the population-based North London Convulsive Status Epilepticus in Childhood Surveillance Study were followed-up between July 2009 and February 2013. They were grouped into epilepsy- and non-epilepsy-related CSE, and compared with population norms and healthy controls using the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire; the Autism Spectrum Screening Questionnaire; and the Swanson, Nolan, and Pelham questionnaire. Children who scored above recommended clinical cut-offs on any scale were invited for a neuropsychiatric assessment. Regression models were fitted to identify clinically relevant covariates associated with behavioural outcomes.At a mean follow-up of 8.1 years post-CSE, 28% of enrolled children were found to have a psychiatric disorder. Children with epilepsy-related CSE scored higher than norms on all scales and children with non-epilepsy-related CSE scored higher than norms on the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire and the Autism Spectrum Screening Questionnaire. Presence of seizures at baseline and recurrence of CSE was associated with worse outcomes in the group with epilepsy. Intellectual abilities were associated with behavioural outcomes in all participants.A large proportion of children manifest behavioural issues 8 years after CSE. The present data highlight the need for behavioural screening in children with neurodevelopmental impairments post-CSE.Eight years post convulsive status epilepticus (CSE), 37% of parents report behavioural issues. Of enrolled children, 28% were found to have a Diagnostic and Statistical Manual mental disorder. Intellectual abilities are strongly associated with behavioural outcomes in children post-CSE.
Project description:New-onset refractory status epilepticus (NORSE) is a syndrome of new-onset drug resistant status epilepticus that often has a catastrophic outcome. A 30-year-old man of Somali origin presented with refractory status to a district general hospital. A clinical diagnosis of NORSE syndrome was made, and he was transferred to the regional epilepsy center for immunomodulatory treatment and consideration for cyclophosphamide treatment. After transfer to the regional epilepsy center, his repeat cerebrospinal fluid tested strongly positive for syphilis, indicating a diagnosis of neurosyphilis, and the patient was treated with high-dose intravenous (IV) benzylpenicillin. His status epilepticus abated 24 h later. New-onset refractory status epilepticus syndrome is a diagnosis of exclusion. Before instigation of potentially harmful neuromodulatory therapies, treatable causes such as neurosyphilis should be considered. We advocate the early transfer of refractory status patients to a specialist epilepsy center for both seizure management and cause determination.
Project description:To compare refractory convulsive status epilepticus (rSE) management and outcome in children with and without a prior diagnosis of epilepsy and with and without a history of status epilepticus (SE).This was a prospective observational descriptive study performed from June 2011 to May 2016 on pediatric patients (1 month-21 years of age) with rSE.We enrolled 189 participants (53% male) with a median (25th-75th percentile) age of 4.2 (1.3-9.6) years. Eighty-nine (47%) patients had a prior diagnosis of epilepsy. Thirty-four (18%) patients had a history of SE. The time to the first benzodiazepine was similar in participants with and without a diagnosis of epilepsy (15 [5-60] vs 16.5 [5-42.75] minutes, p = 0.858). Patients with a diagnosis of epilepsy received their first non-benzodiazepine (BZD) antiepileptic drug (AED) later (93 [46-190] vs 50.5 [28-116] minutes, p = 0.002) and were less likely to receive at least one continuous infusion (35/89 [39.3%] vs 57/100 [57%], p = 0.03). Compared to patients with no history of SE, patients with a history of SE received their first BZD earlier (8 [3.5-22.3] vs 20 [5-60] minutes, p = 0.0073), although they had a similar time to first non-BZD AED (76.5 [45.3-124] vs 65 [32.5-156] minutes, p = 0.749). Differences were mostly driven by the patients with an out-of-hospital rSE onset.Our study establishes that children with rSE do not receive more timely treatment if they have a prior diagnosis of epilepsy; however, a history of SE is associated with more timely administration of abortive medication.
Project description:The GABAA receptor (GABAAR) is a major target of antiseizure drugs (ASDs). A variety of agents that act at GABAARs s are used to terminate or prevent seizures. Many act at distinct receptor sites determined by the subunit composition of the holoreceptor. For the benzodiazepines, barbiturates, and loreclezole, actions at the GABAAR are the primary or only known mechanism of antiseizure action. For topiramate, felbamate, retigabine, losigamone and stiripentol, GABAAR modulation is one of several possible antiseizure mechanisms. Allopregnanolone, a progesterone metabolite that enhances GABAAR function, led to the development of ganaxolone. Other agents modulate GABAergic "tone" by regulating the synthesis, transport or breakdown of GABA. GABAAR efficacy is also affected by the transmembrane chloride gradient, which changes during development and in chronic epilepsy. This may provide an additional target for "GABAergic" ASDs. GABAAR subunit changes occur both acutely during status epilepticus and in chronic epilepsy, which alter both intrinsic GABAAR function and the response to GABAAR-acting ASDs. Manipulation of subunit expression patterns or novel ASDs targeting the altered receptors may provide a novel approach for seizure prevention.