Hormonal influences on seizures: basic neurobiology.

There are sex differences and effects of steroid hormones, such as androgens, estrogens, and progestogens, that influence seizures. Androgens exert early organizational and later activational effects that can amplify sex/gender differences in the expression of some seizure disorders. Female-typical sex steroids, such as estrogen (E2) and progestins, can exert acute activational effects to reduce convulsive seizures and these effects are mediated in part by the actions of steroids in the hippocampus. Some of these anticonvulsive effects of sex steroids are related to their formation of ligands which have agonist-like actions at gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABAA) receptors or antagonist actions at glutamatergic receptors. Differences in stress, developmental phase, reproductive status, endocrine status, and treatments, such as anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs), may alter levels of these ligands and/or the function of target sites, which may mitigate differences in sensitivity to, and/or tolerance of, steroids among some individuals. The evidence implicating sex steroids in differences associated with hormonal, reproductive, developmental, stress, seizure type, and/or therapeutics are discussed.
AuthorsCheryl A Frye
JournalInternational review of neurobiology (Int Rev Neurobiol) Vol. 83 Pg. 27-77 ( 2008) ISSN: 0074-7742 [Print] United States
PMID18929075 (Publication Type: Journal Article, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't, Review)
Chemical References
  • Hormones
  • Animals
  • Hormones (metabolism)
  • Humans
  • Neurobiology
  • Seizures (metabolism, physiopathology)
  • Sex Characteristics

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