Below are the most recent news stories about epilepsy from Epilepsy Research UK and from around the world. You can choose different categories from the side bar on the left (for details of grants made prior to 2012, please visit our research portfolio). You can also catch up with Epilepsy Research UK's fundraising and research news in our supporter newsletters.

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How does the ketogenic diet work?

Posted 6 Jul 2017 in Other treatments

A ketogenic diet can help seizure control for some people with drug-resistant epilepsy, but how does it work? Researchers in China have found clues that could potentially help the development of a new epilepsy therapy. Their findings are published in the journal Experimental and Therapeutic Medicine. Background  A ketogenic diet is high in fat, low in carbohydrate and ‘moderate’ in read more

GeneLoop: Gene therapy activated by seizures to treat epilepsy – a new ERUK funded Fellowship

Gene therapy, in which the excitability of neurons is reduced via gene modification, holds promise as a treatment for drug-resistant focal epilepsy, and it could feasibly replace epilepsy surgery in the future. However, experimental gene therapies have revealed significant flaws in that they either a) have a permanent effect on neurons or b) require ‘re-administration’ each time a seizure occurs. read more

Poll shows that almost 50% of people forget to take their medication at least once a month

Posted 20 Jun 2017 in Anti-epileptic drugs / Living with epilepsy

Patient adherence to medication regimes is a large problem across the world.  Across all medicines, it has been estimated that up to 75% of people do not take their medicines properly.  This could be a problem in epilepsy as a lowering of the medication in the bloodstream could lead to breakthrough seizures.  We wanted to know how often people who read more

Leading Grimsby law firm raising money for Epilepsy Research UK in memory of Robert Abba.

Staff at a leading law firm are to saddle up and drop 200 ft in memory of a Grimsby student.  Robert Abba, 22, died after suffering an epileptic fit at home in Scartho. His mother Rachel works for Bridge McFarland solicitors and colleagues will take in such landmarks as Lincoln Castle and Grimsby Dock Tower as they run, cycle, skydive read more

Is a micro-gene a factor in epileptic seizures?

Posted 19 Jun 2017 in Brain science; genetics

Seizures in epilepsy can be caused by genetic factors or they can be triggered by injury.  While we know that all brains are capable of generating seizures we do not know why some brains do not develop them.  A good example is epilepsy that develops as a result of an ischemic stroke.  Only some of the people who have an read more

UCL Neuroscience Symposium

Posted 16 Jun 2017 in Uncategorized

Today – Friday 16th – we have been at the annual UCL (University College London) Neuroscience Symposium.  It is immensely popular and attracts almost around 800 delegates.  Epilepsy Research UK projects were in evidence and I had the opportunity to meet some of our current researchers as well as young researchers that we would like to encourage in order to keep read more

Gaze matters!

Posted 12 Jun 2017 in Living with epilepsy

Epilepsy patients and others with damage in a part of the brain called the amygdala fail to recognise facial emotions, though they find faces looking sideways more memorable, a new study shows. The study, “Gaze matters! The effect of gaze direction on emotional enhancement of memory for faces in patients with mesial temporal lobe epilepsy”, appeared in the journal Epilepsy and read more

The Hippocampus: What is it?

Posted 7 Jun 2017 in Brain science; genetics

When learning about the human brain, it’s helpful to remember that even the most powerful computer in the world is no match for this part of the human body. With its billions of nerve cells, and the thousands and thousands of connections each nerve cell makes, the brain gives new meaning to the word “complex.” There is much that scientists read more

What is Deep Brain Stimulation

Posted 5 Jun 2017 in Brain science; genetics / Other treatments

  Deep Brain Stimulation therapy (DBS) is one of the techniques that a lot of people are talking about, but what does it do? Is it for everyone? And how far along is the research into epilepsy ? Overview DBS is a surgical procedure (an operation).  It involves implanting an electrode into the brain and a  ‘neurostimulator’ into the chest.. read more

Scientists link more than 100 genes to memory

Posted 1 Jun 2017 in Brain science; genetics

A US study has identified over 100 genes linked to memory, which will help scientists better understand memory function and develop new strategies to treat memory impairment. The findings are published in the journal Cerebral Cortex. These results are particularly relevant to people with epilepsy, whose lives are often significantly affected by memory problems. The research expanded on previous work read more

Cannabidiol show success in Dravet syndrome

Posted 30 May 2017 in Other treatments

Please note that Epilepsy Research UK does not endorse/promote individual epilepsy treatments or pharmaceutical companies. According to a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial*, cannabidiol (CBD) reduces seizure frequency in children with Dravet syndrome – a highly complex epilepsy disorder associated with drug-resistant seizures. The findings are published in The New England Journal of Medicine. CBD is a chemical found in the cannabis read more

Trial to prevent epilepsy in tuberous sclerosis

Posted 30 May 2017 in Epilepsy in children

A new clinical trial to investigate the prevention of epilepsy in children with tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC) has begun at the University of Texas. TSC is a rare genetic condition that causes growths known as ‘tubers’ to develop in different organs, including the brain. It can affect neurological functions, leading to seizures, developmental delay, autism and intellectual disability. Recent evidence read more

Preventing damage caused by status epilepticus

Posted 23 May 2017 in Brain science; genetics

A new intranasal spray could prevent damage caused by status epilepticus, according to research published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). Status epilepticus (SE) is a prolonged seizure (lasting more than five minutes) that requires urgent treatment and hospital admission. If not ended quickly, just one episode can lead to neuronal death, cognitive impairment and memory loss, read more

Improving drug therapies through more effective targeting

New research from the University of Liverpool, published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation, has identified a protein that could help patients with epilepsy respond more positively to drug therapies. There is now increasing body of evidence showing that local inflammation in the brain may be important in preventing control of seizures. Inflammation refers to the process by which the read more

2017 Epilepsy Research Awards announced at The Royal Society

On Monday Epilepsy Research UK announced the recipients of its 2017 grants at a reception at The Royal Society in London. ( The event was attended by Epilepsy Research UK supporters and researchers and is an annual event which runs in National Epilepsy Week. As well as celebrating the new grants, the organisation was also recognising the contribution of the read more

Professor Helen Cross is announced as new President of Epilepsy Research UK

Epilepsy Research UK is proud and pleased to announce the appointment of Professor Helen Cross as President of the organisation.  Professor Cross has long been involved in the organisation being Chair of Trustees between 2005 and 2011.  We are delighted that Professor Cross has now agreed to be President of the organisation. About Professor Cross Professor Helen Cross is The read more

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