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Neuroprotective Properties of Antiepileptics: What are the Implications for Psychiatric Disorders?


Liliana Dell'Osso, Benedetta Nardi*, Leonardo Massoni, Davide Gravina, Francesca Benedetti, Ivan Mirko Cremone and Barbara Carpita   Pages 1 - 26 ( 26 )


Since the discovery of the first antiepileptic compound, increasing attention has been paid to antiepileptic drugs (AEDs), and recently, with the understanding of the molecular mechanism underlying cells death, a new interest has revolved around a potential neuroprotective effect of AEDs. While many neurobiological studies in this field have focused on the protection of neurons, growing data are reporting how exposure to AEDs can also affect glial cells and the plastic response underlying recovery; however, demonstrating the neuroprotective abilities of AEDs remains a changeling task. The present work aims to summarize and review the literature available on the neuroprotective properties of the most commonly used AEDs. Results highlighted how further studies should investigate the link between AEDs and neuroprotective properties; while many studies are available on valproate, results for other AEDs are very limited and the majority of the research has been carried out on animal models. Moreover, a better understanding of the biological basis underlying neuro-regenerative defects may pave the way for the investigation of further therapeutic targets and eventually lead to an improvement in the actual treatment strategies.


Antiepileptic drugs, neuroprotection, valproate, gabapentin, carbamazepine, lamotrigine, topiramate.


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