In a new study from Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio, researchers are exploring a possible link between metabolic defects and seizures. They found diet could influence vulnerability to seizures and identified a common diabetes drug that could help treat disorders like epilepsy.
Researchers made the connection by measuring fruit fly movement using web-cams and determined a drug commonly used to treat type 2 diabetes, called metformin, reduces the intensity of seizures. Unlike other experiments which study behaviors from a collective number of fruit flies, this approach studied their behavior individually, which helped determine subtle differences in behavior and seizure alterations.
“This technique has allowed us to identify a number of metabolism-altering drugs that affect seizure susceptibility,” lead researcher Dr. Daniel Kuebler was quoted as saying. “It has opened up a new line of research looking at the effect dietary modifications have on seizure susceptibility.”