Although the mechanism of action of topiramate is not fully understood, its anticonvulsant properties may result, at least in part, from an interaction with AMPA/kainate receptors. We have recently shown that topiramate selectively inhibits postsynaptic responses mediated by GluR5 kainate receptors. To determine if this action of topiramate is relevant to the anticonvulsant effects of the drug in vivo, we determined the protective activity of topiramate against seizures induced by intravenous infusion of various ionotropic glutamate receptor agonists in mice. Topiramate (25-100 mg/kg, i.p.) produced a dose-dependent elevation in the threshold for clonic seizures induced by infusion of ATPA, a selective agonist of GluR5 kainate receptors. Topiramate was less effective in protecting against clonic seizures induced by kainate, a mixed agonist of AMPA and kainate receptors. Topiramate did not affect clonic seizures induced by AMPA or NMDA. In contrast, the thresholds for tonic seizures induced by higher doses of these various glutamate receptor agonists were all elevated by topiramate. Unlike topiramate, carbamazepine elevated the threshold for AMPA- but not ATPA-induced clonic seizures. Our results are consistent with the possibility that the effects of topiramate on clonic seizure activity are due to functional blockade of GluR5 kainate receptors. Protection from tonic seizures may be mediated by other actions of the drug. Together with our in vitro cellular electrophysiological results, the present observations strongly support a unique mechanism of action of topiramate, which involves GluR5 kainate receptors.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
- Drug Discovery