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- Surviving mossy cells enlarge and receive more excitatory synaptic input in a mouse model of temporal lobe epilepsy. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Hippocampus 2014 Dec 9.
Numerous hypotheses of temporal lobe epileptogenesis have been proposed, and several involve hippocampal mossy cells. Building on previous hypotheses we sought to test the possibility that after epileptogenic injuries surviving mossy cells develop into super-connected seizure-generating hub cells. If so, they might require more cellular machinery and consequently have larger somata, elongate their dendrites to receive more synaptic input, and display higher frequencies of miniature excitatory synaptic currents (mEPSCs). To test these possibilities pilocarpine-treated mice were evaluated using GluR2-immunocytochemistry, whole-cell recording, and biocytin-labeling. Epileptic pilocarpine-treated mice displayed substantial loss of GluR2-positive hilar neurons. Somata of surviving neurons were 1.4-times larger than in controls. Biocytin-labeled mossy cells also were larger in epileptic mice, but dendritic length per cell was not significantly different. The average frequency of mEPSCs of mossy cells recorded in the presence of tetrodotoxin and bicuculline was 3.2-times higher in epileptic pilocarpine-treated mice compared to controls. Other parameters of mEPSCs were similar in both groups. Average input resistance of mossy cells in epileptic mice was reduced to 63% of controls, which is consistent with larger somata and would tend to make surviving mossy cells less excitable. Other intrinsic physiological characteristics examined were similar in both groups. Increased excitatory synaptic input is consistent with the hypothesis that surviving mossy cells develop into aberrantly super-connected seizure-generating hub cells, and soma hypertrophy is indirectly consistent with the possibility of axon sprouting. However, no obvious evidence of hyperexcitable intrinsic physiology was found. Furthermore, similar hypertrophy and hyper-connectivity has been reported for other neuron types in the dentate gyrus, suggesting mossy cells are not unique in this regard. Thus, findings of the present study reveal epilepsy-related changes in mossy cell anatomy and synaptic input but do not strongly support the hypothesis that mossy cells develop into seizure-generating hub cells. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
- The effects of quinacrine, proglumide, and pentoxifylline on seizure activity, cognitive deficit, and oxidative stress in rat lithium-pilocarpine model of status epilepticus. [Journal Article]
- Oxid Med Cell Longev 2014.:630509.
The present data indicate that status epilepticus (SE) induced in adult rats is associated with cognitive dysfunctions and cerebral oxidative stress (OS). This has been demonstrated using lithium-pilocarpine (Li-Pc) model of SE. OS occurring in hippocampus and striatum of mature brain following SE is apparently due to both the increased free radicals production and the limited antioxidant defense. Pronounced alterations were noticed in the enzymatic, glutathione-S transferase (GST), catalase (CAT), and superoxide dismutase (SOD), as well as in the nonenzymatic; thiobarbituric acid (TBARS) and reduced glutathione (GST), indices of OS in the hippocampus and striatum of SE induced animals. Quinacrine (Qcn), proglumide (Pgm), and pentoxifylline (Ptx) administered to animals before inducing SE, were significantly effective in ameliorating the seizure activities, cognitive dysfunctions, and cerebral OS. The findings suggest that all the drugs were effective in the order of Ptx < Pgm < Qcn indicating that these drugs are potentially antiepileptic as well as antioxidant; however, further studies are needed to establish this fact. It can be assumed that these antiepileptic substances with antioxidant properties combined with conventional therapies might provide a beneficial effect in treatment of epilepsy through ameliorating the cerebral OS.
- Elevated Expression of Acid-Sensing Ion Channel 3 Inhibits Epilepsy via Activation of Interneurons. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Mol Neurobiol 2014 Dec 6.
Recent studies have indicated that acid-sensing ion channels may play a significant role in the termination of epilepsy. In particular, acid-sensing ion channel 3 (ASIC3) is expressed in the central nervous system and is most sensitive to extracellular pH. However, whether ASIC3 plays a role in epilepsy is unknown. In this study, qRT-PCR, Western blot, immunohistochemistry, double immunofluorescence labeling, and slice recordings were used. We first detected elevated ASIC3 expression patterns in the brains of temporal lobe epilepsy patients and epileptic rats. ASIC3 was expressed in neurons and glia in both humans and in an experimental model of epilepsy, and ASIC3 was colocalized with inhibitory GABAergic interneurons. By blocking ASIC3 with its antagonist APETx2, we observed that injected APETx2 shortened the latency to seizure and increased the incidence of generalized tonic clonic seizure compared to the control group in models of both pilocarpine- and pentylenetetrazole (PTZ)-induced seizures. Additionally, blocking ASIC3 significantly decreased the frequency of action potential (AP) firing in interneurons. Moreover, APETx2 significantly reduced the amplitudes and frequencies of miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents (mIPSCs) while showed no differences with the APETx2 + bicuculline group and the bicuculline group. These findings suggest that elevated levels of ASIC3 may serve as an anti-epileptic mechanism via postsynaptic mechanisms in interneurons. It could represent a novel therapeutic strategy for epilepsy treatment.
- Characterisation of the membrane transport of pilocarpine in cell suspension cultures of Pilocarpus microphyllus. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- J Plant Physiol 2014 Nov 20.:37-47.
Pilocarpine is an alkaloid obtained from the leaves of Pilocarpus genus, with important pharmaceutical applications. Previous reports have investigated the production of pilocarpine by Pilocarpus microphyllus cell cultures and tried to establish the alkaloid biosynthetic route. However, the site of pilocarpine accumulation inside of the cell and its exchange to the medium culture is still unknown. Therefore, the aim of this study was to determine the intracellular accumulation of pilocarpine and characterise its transport across membranes in cell suspension cultures of P. microphyllus. Histochemical analysis and toxicity assays indicated that pilocarpine is most likely stored in the vacuoles probably to avoid cell toxicity. Assays with exogenous pilocarpine supplementation to the culture medium showed that the alkaloid is promptly uptaken but it is rapidly metabolised. Treatment with specific ABC protein transporter inhibitors and substances that disturb the activity of secondary active transporters suppressed pilocarpine uptake and release suggesting that both proteins may participate in the traffic of pilocarpine to inside and outside of the cells. As bafilomicin A1, a specific V-type ATPase inhibitor, had little effect and NH4Cl (induces membrane proton gradient dissipation) had moderate effect, while cyclosporin A and nifedipine (ABC proteins inhibitors) strongly inhibited the transport of pilocarpine, it is believed that ABC proteins play a major role in the alkaloid transport across membranes but it is not the exclusive one. Kinetic studies supported these results.
- Targeting pharmacoresistant epilepsy and epileptogenesis with a dual-purpose antiepileptic drug. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Brain 2014 Dec 2.
In human epilepsy, pharmacoresistance to antiepileptic drug therapy is a major problem affecting a substantial fraction of patients. Many of the currently available antiepileptic drugs target voltage-gated sodium channels, leading to a rate-dependent suppression of neuronal discharge. A loss of use-dependent block has emerged as a potential cellular mechanism of pharmacoresistance for anticonvulsants acting on voltage-gated sodium channels. There is a need both for compounds that overcome this resistance mechanism and for novel drugs that inhibit the process of epileptogenesis. We show that eslicarbazepine acetate, a once-daily antiepileptic drug, may constitute a candidate compound that addresses both issues. Eslicarbazepine acetate is converted extensively to eslicarbazepine after oral administration. We have first tested using patch-clamp recording in human and rat hippocampal slices if eslicarbazepine, the major active metabolite of eslicarbazepine acetate, shows maintained activity in chronically epileptic tissue. We show that eslicarbazepine exhibits maintained use-dependent blocking effects both in human and experimental epilepsy with significant add-on effects to carbamazepine in human epilepsy. Second, we show that eslicarbazepine acetate also inhibits Cav3.2 T-type Ca(2+) channels, which have been shown to be key mediators of epileptogenesis. We then examined if transitory administration of eslicarbazepine acetate (once daily for 6 weeks, 150 mg/kg or 300 mg/kg) after induction of epilepsy in mice has an effect on the development of chronic seizures and neuropathological correlates of chronic epilepsy. We found that eslicarbazepine acetate exhibits strong antiepileptogenic effects in experimental epilepsy. EEG monitoring showed that transitory eslicarbazepine acetate treatment resulted in a significant decrease in seizure activity at the chronic state, 8 weeks after the end of treatment. Moreover, eslicarbazepine acetate treatment resulted in a significant decrease in mossy fibre sprouting into the inner molecular layer of pilocarpine-injected mice, as detected by Timm staining. In addition, epileptic animals treated with 150 mg/kg, but not those that received 300 mg/kg eslicarbazepine acetate showed an attenuated neuronal loss. These results indicate that eslicarbazepine potentially overcomes a cellular resistance mechanism to conventional antiepileptic drugs and at the same time constitutes a potent antiepileptogenic agent.
- Increased stathmin expression strengthens fear conditioning in epileptic rats. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Biomed Rep 2015 Jan; 3(1):28-32.
Patients with temporal lobe epilepsy have inexplicable fear attack as the aura. However, the underlying neural mechanisms of seizure-modulated fear are not clarified. Recent studies identified stathmin as one of the key controlling molecules in learning and innate fear. Stathmin binds to tubulin, inhibits microtubule assembly and promotes microtubule catastrophes. Therefore, stathmin is predicted to play a crucial role in the association of epilepsy seizures with fear conditioning. Firstly, a pilocarpine model of epilepsy in rats was established, and subsequently the fear condition training was performed. The epileptic rats with fear conditioning (epilepsy + fear) had a much longer freezing time compared to each single stimulus. The increased freezing levels revealed a significantly strengthened effect of the epileptic seizures on the learned fear of the tone-shock contextual. Subsequently, the stathmin expression was compared in the hippocampus, the amygdale, the insular cortex and the temporal lobe. The significant change of stathmin expression occurred in the insular and the hippocampus, but not in the amygdale. Stathmin expression and dendritic microtubule stability were compared between fear and epilepsy in rats. Epilepsy was found to strengthen the fear conditioning with increased expression of stathmin and a decrease in microtubule stability. Fear conditioning slightly increased the expression of stathmin, whereas epilepsy with fear conditioning increased it significantly in the hippocampus, insular cortex and hypothalamus. The phosphorylated stathmin slightly increased in the epilepsy with fear conditioning. The increased expression of stathmin was contrary to the decrease of the stathmin microtubule-associated protein (MAP2) and α-tubulin in the epileptic rats with fear conditioning in all three areas of the brain. The most significant change of the ratio of MAP2 and α-tubulin/stathmin occurred in the insular cortex and hippocampus. In conclusion, epilepsy can strengthen the fear conditioning with increased stathmin and decreased microtubule stability, particularly in the insular cortex and hippacampus. Therefore, the insular cortex may play a more important role between fear and epilepsy.
- Co-administration of subtherapeutic diazepam enhances neuroprotective effect of COX-2 inhibitor, NS-398, after lithium pilocarpine-induced status epilepticus. [Journal Article]
- Neuroscience 2015 Jan 22.:601-10.
Seizures during status epilepticus (SE) cause neuronal death and induce cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2). Pilocarpine-induced SE was used to determine if COX-2 inhibition with NS-398, when administered alone or with diazepam, decreases the duration and/or intensity of SE and/or reduces neuronal injury in the rat hippocampus.Electroencephalogram (EEG) electrodes were implanted in male Sprague-Dawley rats. SE was induced with lithium-pilocarpine, and continuous EEG and video monitoring were performed for 24h. Rats were divided into four groups (n=8-14 rats/group) and received NS-398, diazepam, NS-398 and diazepam, or vehicle 30min after the first motor seizure. Six hours later, NS-398 injection was repeated in the NS-398 and in the NS-398+diazepam groups. The duration of SE (continuous spiking) and the EEG power in the γ-band were analyzed. FluoroJade B staining in the dorsal hippocampus at 24h after SE was analyzed semi-quantitatively in the CA1, CA3 and hilus.The duration and intensity of electrographic SE was not significantly different across the four groups. In rats treated with NS-398 alone, compared to vehicle-treated rats, neuronal damage was significantly lower compared to vehicle-treated rats in the CA3 (27%) and hilus (27%), but neuroprotection was not detected in the CA1. When NS-398 was administered with diazepam, decreased neuronal damage was further obtained in all areas investigated (CA1: 61%, CA3: 63%, hilus: 60%).NS-398, when administered 30min after the onset of SE with a repeat dose at 6h, decreased neuronal damage in the hippocampus. Administration of diazepam with NS-398 potentiates the neuroprotective effect of the COX-2 inhibitor. These neuroprotective effects occurred with no detectable effect on electrographic SE.
- IL-1β increases necrotic neuronal cell death in the developing rat hippocampus after status epilepticus by activating type I IL-1 receptor (IL-1RI). [Journal Article]
- Int J Dev Neurosci 2014 Nov.:232-40.
Interleukin-1β (IL-1β) is associated with seizure-induced neuronal cell death in the adult brain. The contribution of IL-1β to neuronal injury induced by status epilepticus (SE) in the immature brain remains unclear. In the present study, we investigated the effects of IL-1β administration on hippocampal neuronal cell death associated with SE in the immature brain, and the role of the type I receptor of IL-1β (IL-1RI). SE was induced with lithium-pilocarpine in 14-days-old (P14) rat pups. Six hours after SE onset, pups were i.c.v. injected in the right ventricle with IL-1β (0, 0.3, 3, 30, or 300ng), 30ng of IL-1RI antagonist (IL-1Ra) alone, or 30ng of IL-1Ra plus 3ng of IL-1β. As control groups, pups without seizures were injected with 3ng of IL-1β or vehicle. Twenty-four hours after SE onset, neuronal cell death in the CA1 field of dorsal hippocampus was assessed by hematoxylin-eosin, Fluoro-Jade B and in vivo propidium iodide (PI) staining; expression of active caspase-3 (aCas-3) was also determined, using immunohistochemistry. The concentration-response curve of IL-1β showed a bell-shape. Only pups injected with 3ng of IL-1β after SE showed a significant increase in the number of cells with eosinophilic cytoplasm and pyknotic nuclei, as well as F-JB positive cells with respect to the vehicle group. This effect was prevented when IL-1β was injected with IL-1Ra. Injection of 3ng of IL-1β increased the number of PI-positive cells in CA1 area after SE. Injection of 3ng of IL-1β did not produce hippocampal cell death in rats without seizures. Active caspase-3 expression was not observed after treatments in hippocampus. The activation of the IL-1β/IL-1RI system increases necrotic neuronal cell death caused by SE in rat pups.
- Influence of muscarinic receptor modulators on interacerebroventricular injection of arachydonylcyclopropylamide induced antinociception in mice. [Journal Article]
- Physiol Behav 2015 Jan.:273-8.
The interaction between antinociception induced by CB1 agonist and muscarinic receptor modulators has not been studied yet. In the present study, the effect of pilocarpine (a muscarinic agonist) and atropine (a muscarinic antagonist) on arachidonylcyclopropylamide (ACPA, a CB1 agonist) induced antinociception was studied in mice. In this study the antinociceptive effect of intracerebroventricular administration of ACPA (0.001-2μg/mice) or intraperitoneal injection of pilocarpine (2.5-20mg/kg) or atropine (1 and 5mg/kg) were studied individually. Then the effect of co-administration of pilocarine (2.5mg/kg) or atropine (5mg/kg) and ACPA (0.001-2μg/mice) were studied as well. ACPA and pilocarpine induced antinociception in mice but atropine did not. Pilocarpine potentiated but atropine antagonized the antinociceptive effect of ACPA. It is concluded that ACPA induced antinociception is influenced by muscarinic receptor modulators in mice.
- Post-status epilepticus treatment with the cannabinoid agonist WIN 55,212-2 prevents chronic epileptic hippocampal damage in rats. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Neurobiol Dis 2014 Oct 30.:356-365.
Repeated seizures are often associated with development of refractory chronic epilepsy, the most common form of which is temporal lobe epilepsy. G-protein-coupled cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2 receptors) regulate neuronal excitability and have been shown to mediate acute anticonvulsant effects of cannabinoids in animal models. However, the potential of cannabinoids to prevent chronic neuronal damage and development of epilepsy remains unexplored. We hypothesized that treatment with a CB receptor agonist after an episode of status epilepticus - but before development of spontaneous recurrent seizures - might prevent the development of functional changes that lead to chronic epilepsy. Using the rat pilocarpine model, a therapeutic approach was simulated by administering the CB agonist, WIN 55,212-2 after an episode of status epilepticus. Epileptic behavior was monitored during development of spontaneous recurrent seizures for up to 6months. Histology, neurochemistry, redox status and NMDA receptor subunit expression were assessed at 6months after pilocarpine-induced seizures. Sub-acute treatment with WIN 55,212-2 (for 15days starting 24h after PILO injection) dramatically attenuated the severity, duration and frequency of spontaneous recurrent seizures. Further, in contrast to vehicle-treated animals, hippocampi from WIN 55,212-2-treated animals showed: normal thiol redox state, normal NR2A and NR2B subunit expression, preservation of GABAergic neurons and prevention of abnormal proliferation of GABAergic progenitors. This study shows for the first time that, after a known inciting event, treatment with a compound targeting CB receptors has the potential to prevent the epileptogenic events that result in chronic epileptic damage.