- Which insights have we gained from the kindling and post-status epilepticus models?
- Journal of Neuroscience Methods
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Science (FNWI)
- Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences (SILS)
Experimental animal epilepsy research got a big boost since the discovery that daily mild and short (seconds) tetanic stimulations in selected brain regions led to seizures with increasing duration and severity. This model that was developed by Goddard (1967) became known as the kindling model for epileptogenesis and has become a widely used model for temporal lobe epilepsy with complex partial seizures. During the late ninety-eighties the number of publications related to electrical kindling reached its maximum. However, since the kindling procedure is rather labor intensive and animals only develop spontaneous seizures (epilepsy) after hundreds of stimulations, research has shifted toward models in which the animals exhibit spontaneous seizures after a relatively short latent period. This led to post-status epilepticus (SE) models in which animals experience SE after injection of pharmacological compounds (e.g. kainate or pilocarpine) or via electrical stimulation of (limbic) brain regions. These post-SE models are the most widely used models in epilepsy research today. However, not all aspects of mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (MTLE) are reproduced and the widespread brain damage is often a caricature of the situation in the patient. Therefore, there is a need for models that can better replicate the disease. Kindling, although already a classic model, can still offer valid clues in this context. In this paper, we review different aspects of the kindling model with emphasis on experiments in the rat. Next, we review characteristic properties of the post-SE models and compare the neuropathological, electrophysiological and molecular differences between kindling and post-SE epilepsy models. Finally, we shortly discuss the advantages and disadvantages of these models.
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