Novel antiepileptic drug targets based on HCN channel antagonists
About 30% of epilepsy patients are not controlled on currently available antiepileptic drugs. Our laboratory has discovered a novel anti-epileptic drug target.
HCN channels are an ion channel in the brain that regulates rhythmic behaviour which is a hallmark of a seizure. In collaboration with Italian scientists we have demonstrated that a compound that blocks a certain subtype of this channel reduces seizures.
Based on this the NIH Anticonvulsant Screening Program in the US will test this compound on a range of seizure models.
In this project we want to begin to understand how blockers of this channel reduce seizures. We have assembled a range of state-of-the-art tools to answer this question. This includes a viral-based knock-down strategy, a conditional knock-out mouse model and pharmacological tools.
In this project the student will learn a range of experimental techniques ranging from behaviour to recording single neuron activity. These channels are also thought to be important to the generation of pain and drugs based on this target may be useful in this condition as well.
Take part in this project
Students who are applying to study at The Florey can register their interest in this project. Refer to our step-by-step guide to help you with your application.