how tissue samples help epilepsy research
Study of the human brain and tissue can help us to understand:
- why certain parts of the brain are more vulnerable to epilepsy than others
- which particular types of cells in the brain are involved in various processes
- if and how seizures affect the brain
Samples from the Brain and Tissue Bank will only be used in ethically approved research for the study of epilepsy and other related neurological conditions.
How research has helped so far
Research into human brain tissue has already shown significant results. For example, it has helped to underline the importance of wearing helmets for those with repeated seizures which might cause falls and head injury. Research has established that it is the number of times a person hits their heads rather than the number of seizures that can cause some types of cumulative damage to the brain.
Research has also contributed to findings that show how a correct diagnosis of Dravet syndrome – a difficult-to-treat form of epilepsy that can occur in early infancy – could still lead to improved quality of life and cognitive performance.