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Trinka E.,Paracelsus Medical University | Marson A.G.,University of Liverpool | Van Paesschen W.,Catholic University of Leuven | Kalviainen R.,Kuopio University Hospital | And 10 more authors.
Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry | Year: 2013

Objective To compare the effectiveness of levetiracetam (LEV) with extended-release sodium valproate (VPA-ER) and controlled-release carbamazepine (CBZ-CR) as monotherapy in patients with newly diagnosed epilepsy. Methods This unblinded, randomised, 52-week superiority trial (NCT00175903) recruited patients (≥16 years of age) with ≥2 unprovoked seizures in the previous 2 years and ≥1 in the previous 6 months. The physician chose VPA or CBZ as preferred standard treatment; each patient was randomised to standard treatment or LEV. The primary outcome was time to treatment withdrawal (LEV vs standard antiepileptic drugs (AEDs)). Analyses also compared LEV with VPAER, and LEV with CBZ-CR. Findings 1688 patients (mean age 41 years; 44% female) were randomised to LEV (n=841) or standard AEDs (n=847). Time to treatment withdrawal was not significantly different between LEV and standard AEDs: HR (95% CI) 0.90 (0.74 to 1.08). Time to treatment withdrawal (HR (95% CI)) was 1.02 (0.74 to 1.41) for LEV/VPA-ER and 0.84 (0.66 to 1.07) for LEV/CBZ-CR. Time to first seizure (HR, 95% CI) was significantly longer for standard AEDs, 1.20 (1.03 to 1.39), being 1.19 (0.93 to 1.54) for LEV/VPA-ER and 1.20 (0.99 to 1.46) for LEV/CBZ-CR. Estimated 12-month seizure freedom rates from randomisation: 58.7% LEV versus 64.5% VPA-ER; 50.5% LEV versus 56.7% CBZ-CR. Similar proportions of patients within each stratum reported at least one adverse event: 66.1% LEV versus 62.0% VPA-ER; 73.4% LEV versus 72.5% CBZ-CR. Conclusions LEV monotherapy was not superior to standard AEDs for the global outcome, namely time to treatment withdrawal, in patients with newly diagnosed focal or generalised seizures.

Thomas R.H.,University of Cardiff | Thomas R.H.,University of Swansea | Thomas R.H.,Epilepsy Research Center | Drew C.J.G.,University of Swansea | And 4 more authors.
Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry | Year: 2015

Objectives Hyperekplexia is predominantly caused by mutations in the á-1 subunit of the inhibitory glycine receptor (GLRA1). Three quarters of cases show autosomal-recessive inheritance. Methods We carefully ascertained reports of ethnicity from our hyperekplexia research cohort. These were compared with all published cases of hyperekplexia with an identified genetic cause. Ethnicities were subgrouped as Caucasian, Asian, Arabic, Turkish, Jewish or Afro-American. Results We report the ethnicity of 90 cases: 56 cases from our service augmented by 34 cases from the literature. Homozygous deletions of exons 1 to 7 are predominantly seen in people with Turkish backgrounds (n=16/17, p<0.001). In contrast, the dominant point mutation R271 is seen in people of Asian, Caucasian and African-American heritage (n=19) but not in people with Arab or Turkish ethnicities (p<0.001). Conclusions Self-declared ethnicity can predict genescreening outcomes. Cultural practices influence the inheritance patterns and a Caucasian founder is postulated for R271 mutations. © 2015 J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry.

Koepp M.J.,University College London | Thomas R.H.,University of Cardiff | Wandschneider B.,University College London | Berkovic S.F.,Epilepsy Research Center | Schmidt D.,Epilepsy Research Group
Expert Review of Neurotherapeutics | Year: 2014

Juvenile myoclonic epilepsy (JME) is a clinically and genetically heterogenous, generalized epilepsy syndrome usually starting in adolescence. An age-related, predominantly frontocortical-subcortical network dysfunction is likely to be the substrate of bilateral myoclonic seizures occurring at full consciousness within hours after awakening, which are the clinical hallmark of JME. Although essential features of JME were recognized by Herpin more than 140 years ago, it is still an enigmatic epilepsy syndrome in many ways; advanced imaging techniques reveal multi-focal abnormalities in this paradigmatic generalized epilepsy syndrome; clinical studies reveal a major role of genetics in etiology, but the underlying molecular changes are likely to be highly heterogeneous; many JME patients have psycho-social issues, even though their intelligence is normal; antiepileptic drugs (AEDs), notably valproic acid, achieve seizure remission in two thirds of patients, but more patients seem to relapse after stopping AEDs than in any other epilepsy syndrome. This pessimistic outlook has been challenged in recent population-based studies and needs to be assessed in randomized AED withdrawal trials. This review summarizes recent focus neuroimaging, genetic, and behavioral aspects of JME and re-appraises the entrenched view that remission off AEDs is exceptionally rare in JME. © Informa UK, Ltd.

Galizia E.C.,Biomedical Research Center | Myers C.T.,University of Washington | Leu C.,Biomedical Research Center | De Kovel C.G.F.,University Utrecht | And 51 more authors.
Brain | Year: 2015

Photosensitivity is a heritable abnormal cortical response to flickering light, manifesting as particular electroencephalographic changes, with or without seizures. Photosensitivity is prominent in a very rare epileptic encephalopathy due to de novo CHD2 mutations, but is also seen in epileptic encephalopathies due to other gene mutations. We determined whether CHD2 variation underlies photosensitivity in common epilepsies, specific photosensitive epilepsies and individuals with photosensitivity without seizures. We studied 580 individuals with epilepsy and either photosensitive seizures or abnormal photoparoxysmal response on electroencephalography, or both, and 55 individuals with photoparoxysmal response but no seizures. We compared CHD2 sequence data to publicly available data from 34 427 individuals, not enriched for epilepsy. We investigated the role of unique variants seen only once in the entire data set. We sought CHD2 variants in 238 exomes from familial genetic generalized epilepsies, and in other public exome data sets. We identified 11 unique variants in the 580 individuals with photosensitive epilepsies and 128 unique variants in the 34 427 controls: unique CHD2 variation is over-represented in cases overall (P = 2.17 × 10-5). Among epilepsy syndromes, there was over-representation of unique CHD2 variants (3/36 cases) in the archetypal photosensitive epilepsy syndrome, eyelid myoclonia with absences (P = 3.50 × 10-4). CHD2 variation was not over-represented in photoparoxysmal response without seizures. Zebrafish larvae with chd2 knockdown were tested for photosensitivity. Chd2 knockdown markedly enhanced mild innate zebrafish larval photosensitivity. CHD2 mutation is the first identified cause of the archetypal generalized photosensitive epilepsy syndrome, eyelid myoclonia with absences. Unique CHD2 variants are also associated with photosensitivity in common epilepsies. CHD2 does not encode an ion channel, opening new avenues for research into human cortical excitability. © 2015 The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights reserved.

Khodaie B.,Shefa Neuroscience Research Center | Khodaie B.,Islamic Azad University at Karaj | Lotfinia A.A.,Shefa Neuroscience Research Center | Lotfinia A.A.,Islamic Azad University at Karaj | And 10 more authors.
Behavioural Brain Research | Year: 2015

Social isolation has significant long-term psychological and physiological consequences. Both social isolation and traumatic brain injury (TBI) alter normal brain function and structure. However, the influence of social isolation on recovery from TBI is unclear. This study aims to evaluate if social isolation exacerbates the anatomical and functional deficits after TBI in young rats. Juvenile male rats were divided into four groups; sham operated control with social contacts, sham control with social isolation, TBI with social contacts, and TBI with social isolation. During four weeks after brain injury in juvenile rats, we evaluated the animal behaviors by T-maze and open-field tests, recorded brain activity with electrocorticograms and assessed structural changes by histological procedures in the hippocampal dentate gyrus, CA1, and CA3 areas. Our findings revealed significant memory impairments and hyperactivity conditions in rats with TBI and social isolation compared to the other groups. Histological assessments showed an increase of the mean number of dark neurons, apoptotic cells, and caspase-3 positive cells in all tested areas of the hippocampus in TBI rats with and without social isolation compared to sham rats. Furthermore, social isolation significantly increased the number of dark cells, apoptotic neurons, and caspase-3 positive cells in the hippocampal CA3 region in rats with TBI. This study indicates the harmful effect of social isolation on anatomical and functional deficits induced by TBI in juvenile rats. Prevention of social isolation may improve the outcome of TBI. © 2014 Elsevier B.V.

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