UCSF researcher finds way to treat severe childhood epilepsy

A UCSF researcher may have found a way to treat a severe form of childhood epilepsy by working with zebrafish.
September 3, 2013 6:37:12 PM PDT
A UCSF researcher may have found a way to treat a severe form of childhood epilepsy by working with a fish found in many home aquariums.

Scott Baraban, Ph.D., used zebrafish with a genetic disorder identical to Dravet Syndrome, which can cause daily seizures in children. He gave the fish an antihistamine called Clemizole.

It stopped the seizures, and since it's already approved by the Food And Drug Administration, it can potentially hit the market by next year.

"Because this particular compound is already FDA approved, we can design potential add-on trials right now where we give this drug to a small group of Dravet patients and see how they respond," said Baraban.

Zebrafish are becoming a favorite of medical researchers because they can be bred quickly and that let U.C. San Francisco researchers do 10 years' worth of experiments in just two years.


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