Inhibition of N-type calcium currents by lamotrigine in rat amygdalar neurones

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LAMOTRIGINE (LAG) is a new anticonvulsant drug for the treatment of partial and secondarily generalized seizures. The present study was aimed at elucidating the possible involvement of Ca2+ channels in the action of LAG using whole-cell patch clamp recordings in acutely dissociated amygdalar neurones. Whole-cell Ca2+ currents (ICa) were elicited by 200 ms step commands from −70 mV to −10 mV. Application of LAG reduced the ICa by an average of 40.3 ± 3.2%. The inhibition of ICa by LAG was markedly reduced or eliminated in the presence of the N-type Ca2+ channel blocker ω-cono-toxin-GVIA (1 μM). These results suggest that LAG may exert its anticonvulsant effect through inhibition of presynaptic N-type Ca2+ channels, thereby reducing glutamate release.

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