A new study from the USA suggests that a dietary supplement glucosamine can be used to cut excitability in brain cells, a trigger for seizures, and making it possible to find new treatments for epilepsy.
For the study, a team of researchers tested their theory by monitoring the effects of the dietary supplement against neural excitability. They explain that this supplement blocks an enzyme that clears O-GlcNAcylation from the brain which leads to a rapid increase in levels of the protein.
In general, the team concluded: Our findings support the conclusion that protein O-GlcNAcylation is a regulator of neuronal excitability, and it represents a promising target for further research on seizure disorder therapeutics.”
Severe forms of childhood epilepsy, which are not amenable to standard therapy with anticonvulsants may be cured with the new experimental drug based on purified cannabidiol. The drug has a working title Epidiolex.
In the third phase of clinical tests, the drug was given to 61 patients at a dosage of 20 milligrams per kilogram of body weight. There was also a control group of 59 patients. The average age of the volunteers was 10 years and about 30% of patients were younger than 6 years. Together with the experimental drug children continued to receive standard anticonvulsant drugs.
Scientists say that Epidiolex helped to reduce the monthly frequency of seizures by 39%. In placebo background frequency of attacks has fallen by only 13%. The main ingredient of the drug – purified cannabidiol. What is important, there is no THC, the main psychoactive compound of marijuana. If the drug is registered, it will be a real breakthrough. Annual sales could exceed $ 1.1 billion by 2021.