Project R-6188


FWO travel credit for a long stay abroad, at University of Trieste, Italy concerning study "Febrile seizures persistently alter hippocampal GABAA receptor physiology" (Research)


Febrile seizures (FS) are the most common type of childhood seizures, affecting 2-3% of the children between 3 months and 5 years. Correlative clinical studies have linked early-life FS to temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) later in life. Insight into the cellular mechanisms underlying FS-induced epileptogenesis is crucial for a rational drug design to treat TLE. The present study aims at elucidating whether altered hippocampal GABAergic signalling can be a link between childhood FS and TLE in adulthood. For a translational approach, we collected freshly frozen hippocampal biopsies from TLE patients with and without a FS history. Hippocampal membranes are isolated from the frozen specimen and transplanted into Xenopus laevis oocytes allowing the incorporation of human GABAA receptors in the oocyte plasma membrane. GABA-evoked currents are recorded by two micro-electrode voltage-clamp on oocytes. The results of this study indicate that FS cause a long-lasting alteration in the functional properties of hippocampal GABAA receptors.

Period of project

15 February 2014 - 27 April 2014