Many pediatric cases of incurable epilepsy are attributed to a congenital defect, known as cortical dysplasia (CD) in which the neurons fail to migrate to appropriate locations in the brain during development. This results in abnormal brain architecture and neuronal miswiring that manifests as severe seizures. Currently, no treatments exist to prevent this condition and the only option is to reduce seizures using anticonvulsants or neurosurgery.
West syndrome is a rare epilepsy syndrome that affects about 1 in 3000 infants. It is diagnosed based on a triad of symptoms: infantile spasms, a high-voltage, chaotic electroencephalogram (EEG) pattern called hypsarrhythmia and cognitive impairment.
Infantile Spasms (West Syndrome) is a severe type of childhood epilepsy. Researchers in Dr. Swann's lab have developed a rat model of infantile spasms to identify underlying causes and to develop effective therapies. Watch this video to see the strikingly similar seizure patterns experienced by this rat model and a child with infantile spasms.
Texas Children’s Hospital is ranked as one of the nation’s top children’s hospitals by U.S. News & World Report. Our mission is to create a healthier future for children and women throughout our global community by leading in patient care, education and research.
Texas Children’s hospital has hired Dr. Rajalaxmi Natarajan to create new scientific research content for Cain labs and Duncan NRI websites. A cell and neurobiologist by training, she will write succinct synopses of ground-breaking epilepsy research conducted at Cain labs and elsewhere in the globe.
Dr. Matthew Weston, postdoctoral fellow at Dr. Swann’s lab received the prestigious NIH Pathway to Independence grant (K99/R00) for his research proposal titled, “Regulation of Synapse and network dynamics by mTOR”. This grant mechanism is designed to facilitate a timely and easier transition from a mentored postdoctoral research position to a stable independent research position.
The Cain Laboratories and Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute (NRI) at Texas Children’s and Baylor College of Medicine welcome a new faculty member, Dr. Mingshan Xue.
Dr. Swann conducted a workshop entitled, “Understanding Infantile Spasms: a Pathogenic Perspective” at the American Epilepsy Society’s 5th Biennial North American Regional Epilepsy Congress between December 5-9, 2014 at Seattle, Washington.