Expression of mRNA encoding α1E and α1G subunit in the brain of a rat model of absence epilepsy

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LOW voltage-activated calcium channels are thought to play a key role in the generation of spike and waves discharges characteristic of absence epilepsy. Therefore, the expression level of mRNA encoding calcium channel α1E and α1G subunits was measured in the brain of genetic absence epilepsy rats from Strasbourg (GAERS). Using quantitative RT-PCR and in situ hybridization, no difference was found in α1G mRNA expression between GAERS and control animals, while a decreased expression of α1E was seen in the cerebellum and the brain stem of the GAERS. This phenomenon was not observed in young animals when the epileptic pheno-type is not expressed.

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