Mon Feb 20 2012
According to current information conducted by a Canadian team, a new drug may have a groundbreaking favorable result in treating kids with epilepsy and those suffering from absence seizures.
For now, the new drug is working in rats by completely suppressing absence seizures, which are most common in children. The information, published on February 15 in the science journal Science Translational Medicine, has already started testing the drug on humans. The lead author of the study, Terry Snutch, said that the human testing, which began in December 2011, is expected to be completed later on this year.
Snutch, a professor and Canada Research Chair in the Michael Smith Laboratories at the University of British Columbia, says that these early findings make his team cautiously optimistic that the results the rats experienced in the study will work as well in humans.
“It’s far enough along that we would know in relatively short order,” he said. “We are quite confident that it will interact with the human channel in the same way that it does in the rats to alleviate the epilepsy.”
The new drug being talked about in this study work by stopping calcium ion flow into the T-type calcium channels in the brain. This is effective because absence seizures are believed to be caused by a mutation in the T-type calcium channels that make them launch at too high a frequency, which causes an overflow of calcium.
“This T-type calcium channel (mutation) causes the frequency and the patterning of that firing to go haywire up to hundreds of times a day,” said Snutch.
This new drug would be a welcome change for patients that are currently treated with various other medications like Topamax. Topamax has long been linked with serious adverse side effects that have caused an uproar among people who use the drug, including women. Since studies have shown that Topamax—when taken during pregnancy—can cause babies to be born with serious birth defects, including PPHN, cleft palate, neural tube defects and heart, lung and brain defects. This fact has caused many lawsuits to be filed against the manufacturers of Topamax amid claims that the public was not properly warned of the dangers linked to epilepsy medication.
If your baby was born with birth defects after being exposed to Topamax, contact Greg Jones today for a free consultation. I am experienced at fighting Topamax lawsuits and may be able to get you compensated for your baby’s injuries.