Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Understanding Of Why Seizures Occur With Alcohol Withdrawal

Date:
October 19, 2009
Source:
Georgetown University Medical Center
Summary:
Epileptic seizures are the most dramatic and prominent aspect of the "alcohol withdrawal syndrome" that occurs when a person abruptly stops a long-term or chronic drinking habit. Researchers have shown that the flow of calcium ions into brain cells via voltage-gated calcium channels plays an important role in the generation of alcohol withdrawal seizures, because blocking this flow suppresses these seizures. But do the changes in calcium currents contribute to alcohol withdrawal seizures or are they a consequence of the seizures?

Epileptic seizures are the most dramatic and prominent aspect of the "alcohol withdrawal syndrome" that occurs when a person abruptly stops a long-term or chronic drinking habit. Researchers have shown that the flow of calcium ions into brain cells via voltage-gated calcium channels plays an important role in the generation of alcohol withdrawal seizures, because blocking this flow suppresses these seizures. But do the changes in calcium currents contribute to alcohol withdrawal seizures or are they a consequence of the seizures?

Using a careful analysis of correlations between the course of alcohol withdrawal seizures and the expression of calcium currents, Georgetown University Medical Center researchers found that the enhancement of total calcium current density in pre-clinical animal studies occur prior to the onset of alcohol withdrawal seizures. The research presented at 39th annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience also shows that calcium currents remain enhanced during the period of seizure susceptibility, but return to control levels when the period of seizure susceptibility is over.

"These preliminary findings are the first to indicate that altered calcium channel activity contributes to the occurrence of alcohol withdrawal seizures," explains lead author, Prosper N'Gouemo, PhD, an assistant professor in the department of pediatrics at GUMC. "The next step in our research is to determine which types of voltage-gated calcium channels contribute to the enhanced current density that takes place before the onset of alcohol withdrawal seizures so a potential treatment can be developed."

The study was funded by grants from the National Institutes of Health. The author reports no related financial conflict.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Georgetown University Medical Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Georgetown University Medical Center. "New Understanding Of Why Seizures Occur With Alcohol Withdrawal." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 October 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/10/091018141720.htm>.
Georgetown University Medical Center. (2009, October 19). New Understanding Of Why Seizures Occur With Alcohol Withdrawal. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/10/091018141720.htm
Georgetown University Medical Center. "New Understanding Of Why Seizures Occur With Alcohol Withdrawal." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/10/091018141720.htm (accessed September 1, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Monday, September 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

Newsy (Aug. 30, 2014) A new study suggests 100 percent of adult humans (those over 18 years of age) have Demodex mites living in their faces. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

AFP (Aug. 30, 2014) Authorities in Liberia try to stem the spread of the Ebola epidemic by raising awareness and setting up sanitation units for people to wash their hands. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
California Passes 'yes-Means-Yes' Campus Sexual Assault Bill

California Passes 'yes-Means-Yes' Campus Sexual Assault Bill

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 30, 2014) California lawmakers pass a bill requiring universities to adopt "affirmative consent" language in their definitions of consensual sex, part of a nationwide drive to curb sexual assault on campuses. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Drug Could Reduce Cardiovascular Deaths

New Drug Could Reduce Cardiovascular Deaths

Newsy (Aug. 30, 2014) The new drug from Novartis could reduce cardiovascular deaths by 20 percent compared to other similar drugs. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins