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Why we urgently need improved seizure and epilepsy therapies for children and neonates

Pressler, RM; Lagae, L; (2020) Why we urgently need improved seizure and epilepsy therapies for children and neonates. Neuropharmacology , 170 , Article 107854. 10.1016/j.neuropharm.2019.107854.

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Abstract

In contrast to epilepsy in adolescents and adults, neonatal seizures and early onset epilepsy poses unique challenges with significant repercussion for treatment choices. Most importantly, high seizure burden and epileptic encephalopathy are associated with developmental, behavioural and cognitive problems. The causes are multifactorial and include etiology, seizure burden, epileptic encephalopathy, but also antiseizure medication. In contrast to adults and older children only very few drugs have been licenced for infants and neonates, and after a long delay. Very recently, extrapolation of adult data has become possible as a path to speed up drug development for younger children but this is not necessarily possible for infants and neonates. With the advances in understanding the molecular basis of many epilepsies, targeted therapies become available, for example for KCNQ2 mutation related epilepsies, Dravet syndrome or tuberous sclerosis complex. Drug trials in neonates are particularly challenging because of their inconspicuous clinical presentation, the need for continuous EEG monitoring, high co-morbidity, and poor response to antiepileptic drugs. There is an urgent need for development of new drugs, evaluation of safety and efficacy of current antiseizure drugs, as well as for national policies and guidelines for the management of seizures and epilepsy in neonates and infants.

Type: Article
Title: Why we urgently need improved seizure and epilepsy therapies for children and neonates
DOI: 10.1016/j.neuropharm.2019.107854
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuropharm.2019.107854
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health > Developmental Neurosciences Dept
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10110141
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