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Protection of hippocampal dendritic spines and synaptic plasticity in experimental epilepsy by a docosanoid

In a recent publication, the N. Bazan lab reported the uncovering of naturally-occurring molecules hippocampal neuronal networks in the pilocarpine post-status epilepticus model of limbic epileptogenesis. The data demonstrate that the docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)-derived docosanoid mediator, neuroprotectin D1 (NPD1), prevents experimental epileptogenesis. The paper reports that the structure and function of hippocampal neuronal networks are restored by measuring brief spontaneous microepileptiform activity with high amplitudes in the CA1 pyramidal and stratum radiatum in epileptogenesis, and we found that systemically-injected NPD1 led to a reduction in spontaneous recurrent seizures. The results indicate that NPD1 displays neuroprotective bioactivity on the hippocampal neuronal network ensemble that mediates aberrant circuit activity during epileptogenesis, which may contribute to the development of anti-epileptogenic therapeutic strategies.

Musto AE, Walker CP, Petasis NA, Bazan NG. Hippocampal neuro-networks and dendritic spine perturbations in epileptogenesis are attenuated by neuroprotectin D1. PLoS One. 2015;10:e0116543. PMCID: PMC4305283.