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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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A closer look at ……..SYNAPTIC VESICLES

In order to conduct the millions of tasks the human brain completes every day, nerve cells must communicate with each other. Neighbouring cells are connected by junctions, which are called synapses. Chemical messengers, called neurotransmitters, must travel from one cell to another across a synapse in order to deliver a message. Before travelling across synapses, these chemical messengers are stored read more

The role of autoantibodies in epilepsy: Final Report

This is the final report for a project grant awarded in 2012 for £149,916 to Professor Bethan Lang, Professor Sarosh Irani, Dr Jane Adcock, Dr Holger Kramer, and Professor Arjune Sen at the University of Oxford.  The immune system normally protects a person from infections by making specialised agents called antibodies which normally recognise “foreign targets” and destroy them. Doctors utilise read more

What does the future of Epilepsy Research hold?

Dr Simon Keller at the University of Liverpool was awarded a £73,220 project grant in this year’s funding round.  We asked Dr Keller and his colleague Professor Tony Marson for their perspective on what the next ten years of epilepsy research hold. This is what they said: “It is difficult to know for sure how treatments for seizures will improve read more

Sleep apnoea and epilepsy: is there a relationship?

What is the relationship between epilepsy and sleep apnoea? In previous studies it has been shown that a greater number of people with epilepsy also experience sleep apnoea, than in the general population. Researchers from Rutgers University wanted to develop a screening tool to detect sleep apnoea in patients with epilepsy as it is known that sleep apnoea can increase read more

Epilepsy Research UK on Tour – Birmingham

Posted 26 Oct 2018 in News from Epilepsy Research UK

On Wednesday 26 September, Epilepsy Research UK travelled to Birmingham to host an evening together with some of our regional researchers and supporters. The annual ILAE (International League Against Epilepsy) conference was taking place, so it was a great opportunity for us to see our researchers! ERUK Research Manager Caoimhe Bennett put together a programme of speakers for us to read more

Improving epilepsy care through brain modelling

Researchers from France are trialling the use of brain modelling to improve epilepsy care in a large clinical study. In planning surgery, scientists create personalised brain models of patients and simulate the spread of abnormal activity during epileptic seizures. Earlier studies showed promising results for this approach which is now providing the basis for a large scale trial in a read more

Important new finding in the mechanisms underlying SUDEP

An Epilepsy Research UK-funded study has made an important finding in the mechanisms underlying sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP), which may lead to treatment options in the future. Professor John Jeffreys at the University of Oxford has been working alongside researchers at Purdue University and the University of Bristol on the project, funded by ERUK in 2014. The research read more

Alzheimer’s disease and antiepileptic medication

According to a new study from the University of Eastern Finland there is an increased risk of stroke among people with Alzheimer’s who are being treated with antiepileptic drugs.  The incidence of an epilepsy diagnosis is highest in those who are young or in those aged over 65.  Part of the reason for this increase in the older population is read more

Brain surgery: predicting patient outcomes

Artificial Intelligence is increasingly being used to make real inroads in the medical field.  Now neurologists from the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) have used artificial intelligence to develop a technique which may eventually help both patients and doctors weigh up the pros and cons of using brain surgery to treat debilitating seizures caused by epilepsy. Although the number read more

Personal experience and scientific evidence – what does it feel like to have a seizure?

What does it feel like to have a seizure? Whilst neurologists will say that a seizure is caused by an over-excitation of neuronal activity in the brain, some people describe their experience as an ‘earthquake, starting slow and growing’. Now, studies at Jefferson (Philadelphia University and Thomas Jefferson University), have shown that some types of seizure paradoxically begin with a read more

Brain tumours and epilepsy in children

Compared with the effects of brain tumours in adults, brain tumours in children cause additional problems and complications. One issue is that they can lead to intractable epilepsy. However the genetic cause of this hard-to-treat epilepsy in paediatric brain tumours is not yet fully understood and nor can it be effectively treated with existing epileptic drugs. Now a Korean research read more

Sleep disorders and epilepsy

Sleep disorders in people with epilepsy can exacerbate their symptoms and often remains undiagnosed. Now researchers from Rutgers University have developed a tool to help neurologists identify people with obstructive sleep apnoea whose epilepsy may be magnified by their sleep disorder.  Identifying sleep disorders and treating them can help in seizure control in some people.  At the moment specialists have read more

Climbing Kilimanjaro for research

Posted 1 Oct 2018 in News from Epilepsy Research UK

Chris Scoffield has just returned from scaling Mount Kilimanjaro with his brother-in-law Nathan Conduit. Kilimanjaro is one of the toughest treks in the world and the tallest free standing mountain on the planet standing at 5895m. Chris tells us about his exciting adventure below. “I have just returned from trekking up mount Kilimanjaro to raise funds for Epilepsy Research UK and read more

Paediatric epilepsy care

In the early 2000s paediatric neurologists and the British Paediatric Neurology Association (BPNA) realised that there were shortcomings in the standard of care in the treatment of children with epilepsy.  It was clear that many children with epilepsy in the UK were treated by paediatricians with no specialised training in epilepsy.   And appalling as this finding was, it was read more

Can we predict who will develop epilepsy following brain trauma?

Posted 25 Sep 2018 in Epilepsy and its causes / Epilepsy general

  Is it possible to predict those people who will develop epilepsy following brain trauma? Acquired epilepsy does not occur immediately after brain injury. Visible symptoms can occur months, or even years after the traumatic event, according to Professor Gluckman, professor of engineering science and mechanics, neurosurgery and biomedical engineering and associate director, Penn State Centre for Neural Engineering. In read more

Is there a way to determine who will react badly to antiepileptic medication?

Posted 21 Sep 2018 in Anti-epileptic drugs / Living with epilepsy

A quick, easy and inexpensive test could one day help specialists determine which epilepsy patients are likely to react badly to carbamazepine. Carbamazepine is an antiepileptic drug  which is widely used as a first line treatment for epilepsy, but is also prescribed for other conditions, such as bipolar disorder and neuralgia.  However, it can also cause extreme skin conditions in read more

Epilepsy Research UK on tour – Exeter

Posted 20 Sep 2018 in News from Epilepsy Research UK

On Wednesday 12 September, Epilepsy Research UK visited The Living Systems Institute at The University of Exeter to host an evening together with some of our regional researchers and supporters. Professors John Terry & Adam Zeman put together a fantastic programme for us and we were keen to hear all about the research that has taken place, some of which read more

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