Multidisciplinary Awards, Funded by the Christopher Donalty and Kyle Coggins

Reduction In Seizure Susceptibility Through Modification Of The Level Of Extracellular Sialic Acid

Dmytro Isaev, PhD - Gregory L. Holmes, MD
Bogomoletz Institute of Physiology, Kiev, Ukraine

Far too many individuals with epilepsy who take antiepileptic drugs continue to have seizures or suffer from serious medication side effects. Working together, Dr. Holmes (a pediatric neurologist) and Dr. Isaev (a senior researcher in general physiology of the nervous system) recently showed that they could dramatically reduce seizures by altering a naturally occurring compound in the brain called sialic acid. By reducing sialic acid, they have been able to turn down “the thermostat of the brain,” reducing brain excitability without causing any substantial side effects. In this one-year study, Drs. Holmes and Isaev will build upon these exciting preliminary results and determine whether modification of sialic acid reduces seizures in a mouse model of epilepsy and prevents the onset of epilepsy following brain injury.


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