Apr 15, 2003

Control of nerve agent-induced seizures is critical for neuroprotection and survival

Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology
Tsung-Ming ShihJ H McDonough


This study evaluated the potency and rapidity of some anticholinergics (atropine, biperiden, and trihexyphenidyl) and benzodiazepines (diazepam and midazolam) as an anticonvulsant treatment against seizures induced by six nerve agents (tabun, sarin, soman, cyclosarin, VR, and VX) and summarized the relationship between anticonvulsant activity and nerve agent-induced lethality and neuropathology. Guinea pigs, previously implanted with cortical electrodes for EEG recording, were pretreated with pyridostigmine bromide (0.026 mg/kg im) 30 min prior to challenge with 2x LD50 dose (sc) of a given nerve agent; in a separate experiment, animals were challenged with 5x LD50 sc of soman. One minute after agent challenge the animals were treated im with 2 mg/kg atropine SO(4) admixed with 25 mg/kg 2-PAM Cl. Five minutes after the start of EEG seizures, animals were treated im with different doses of anticholinergics or benzodiazepines and observed for seizure termination. The time to seizure onset, the time to seizure termination, and 24-h lethality were recorded. The anticonvulsant ED50 of each drug for termination of seizures induced by each agent was calculated and compared. Brain tissue from animals that survived 24 h was examined for...Continue Reading

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