Epilepsy affects ≤ 1% of the world's population. Antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) are the mainstay of treatment, although more than a third of patients are not rendered seizure free with existing medications. Uncontrolled epilepsy is associated with increased mortality and physical injuries, and a range of psychosocial morbidities, posing a substantial economic burden on individuals and society. Limitations of the present AEDs include suboptimal efficacy and their association with a host of adverse reactions. Continued efforts are being made in drug development to overcome these shortcomings employing a range of strategies, including modification of the structure of existing drugs, targeting novel molecular substrates and non-mechanism-based drug screening of compounds in traditional and newer animal models. This article reviews the need for new treatments and discusses some of the emerging compounds that have entered clinical development. The ultimate goal is to develop novel agents that can prevent the occurrence of seizures and the progression of epilepsy in at risk individuals.
- Antiepileptic drug
- NS 1209