Recombinant AAV-mediated expression of galanin in rat hippocampus suppresses seizure development

En Ju D Lin, Cristina Richichi, Deborah Young, Kristin Baer, Annamaria Vezzani, Matthew J. During

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Galanin, a 29- or 30-amino acid neuropeptide, has been implicated in the modulation of seizures. In this study, we constructed a recombinant adeno-associated viral (AAV) vector to constitutively over-express galanin (AAV-GAL). The vector mediated efficient transduction of HEK 293 cells in vitro and robust galanin expression in vivo when injected into the rat dorsal hippocampus. Rats were administered kainic acid intrahippocampally 2.5 months following AAV-GAL or empty vector (AAV-Empty) injection to study the effect of vector-mediated galanin over-expression on seizures. AAV-GAL-injected rats showed a decreased number of seizure episodes and total time spent in seizures compared to AAV-Empty rats, despite similar latencies to development of the first EEG seizure and similar levels of neuronal damage in the CA3 region for both groups. These data show that recombinant AAV mediates strong and stable overexpression of galanin when injected into the rat hippocampus resulting in a significant anticonvulsive effect. The seizure suppression effect of galanin expression in the hippocampus by viral vectors may lead to novel therapeutic strategies for the treatment and management of intractable seizures with focal onset such as temporal lobe epilepsy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2087-2092
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Neuroscience
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2003


  • Epilepsy
  • Gene therapy
  • Kainic acid
  • Neuropeptides
  • Viral vector

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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