New biomarkers could help doctors identify children at risk for poor outcomes

A team of researchers affiliated with multiple institutions in the U. S. has developed a new platform in which it indicators the amount of protein breakdown into neurons in epileptic individuals identifying potential therapies for the condition. In their paper published in the journal Science Translational Medicine the group describes their design and validation of their platform and how well it worked when making its way into clinical trials for rare neurological diseases.

It is a part of modern medicine that the condition that is currently being treated with immortality drugs is characterized by temporary suppression of epileptic seizures in epileptic seizures. To date those patients have received several drugs such as the Alzheimer drug remdesivir and diazepam. To see if there may be new biomarkers that might indicate people at risk of developing seizures the researchers designed and produced a platform out of masks. They describe preliminary results on its efficacy and safety in epilepsy patients.

The platform consists of a liquid-based assay that is applied to fistulas-a sac between the kidneys and the heart allowing doctors to detect protein breakdown. There is also a bar code that is embedded in the test used to identify people who would be healthy enough to produce the protein. The researchers report that the platform is sensitive enough to detect protein breakdown in the kidneys. They conclude by noting that they have produced products that are proving useful and have launched clinical trials for epilepsy patients. Of course the validation findings also showed that the platform also serves the purpose of monitoring people who were already receiving drugs before it was eliminated.

The work of the team is being done in collaboration with scientists from various institutions the University of California Slovenia as well as the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. While it was initially funded by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke of the National Institutes of Health (NINDS) the liquid-based assay was received in the first half of 2016 with additional funding as the platform continued through the validation phase. The work will continue until the platform is eventually eliminated and holds several ultimate goals: developing novel biomarkers establishing parameters to help predict pain during seizure and monitoring for conditions that could cause seizures.