Frontiers in Neuroscience (Apr 2023)

Advances toward precision therapeutics for developmental and epileptic encephalopathies

  • Ilaria Bertocchi,
  • Ilaria Bertocchi,
  • Marco Cambiaghi,
  • Mazahir T. Hasan,
  • Mazahir T. Hasan

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 17


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Developmental and epileptic encephalopathies are childhood syndromes of severe epilepsy associated with cognitive and behavioral disorders. Of note, epileptic seizures represent only a part, although substantial, of the clinical spectrum. Whether the epileptiform activity per se accounts for developmental and intellectual disabilities is still unclear. In a few cases, seizures can be alleviated by antiseizure medication (ASM). However, the major comorbid features associated remain unsolved, including psychiatric disorders such as autism-like and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder-like behavior. Not surprisingly, the number of genes known to be involved is continuously growing, and genetically engineered rodent models are valuable tools for investigating the impact of gene mutations on local and distributed brain circuits. Despite the inconsistencies and problems arising in the generation and validation of the different preclinical models, those are unique and precious tools to identify new molecular targets, and essential to provide prospects for effective therapeutics.