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Eur J Neurol. 2007 Aug;14(8):865-72.

Extracellular signal-regulated protein kinase in human intractable epilepsy.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, The First Affiliated Hospital, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, China.


Extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERK) such as ERK1 [p44 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK)] and ERK2 (p42 MAPK) are activated in the central nervous system under physiological and pathological conditions such as ischemia and epilepsy. Our aim is to investigate ERK1, ERK2, and phosphorylated ERK (p-ERK) (Thr202/Tyr 204) expression in the temporal lobe of patients with intractable epilepsy (IE) and to explore its possible role of ERK in it. Tissue samples from temporal neocortices of 40 patients who had surgery for IE were used to detect ERK1, ERK2, and p-ERK (Thr 202/Tyr 204) expression through immunohistochemistry and western blot. We compared these tissues against 17 histological normal temporal lobes from head-trauma patients. ERK1, ERK2, and p-ERK in IE were significantly higher than those in the controls. They were mainly expressed in the cytoplasm of neurons and glial cells. There was also increased detection of p-ERK in the gliotic cortex of IE compared with the non-gliotic cortex. These findings were consistently observed in western blot and immunohistochemistry techniques. ERK expression in patients with IE was significantly increased compared with the controls. This suggested a probable role of ERK in the pathogenesis of IE.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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