Epilepsy is a common group of neurological diseases. Acquired epilepsy can be caused by brain insults, such as trauma, infection or tumour, and followed by a latent period from several months to years before the emergence of recurrent spontaneous seizures. More than 50 % of epilepsy cases will develop chronic neurodegenerative, neurocognitive and neuropsychiatric comorbidities. It is important to understand the mechanisms by which a brain insult results in acquired epilepsy and comorbidities in order to identify targets for novel therapeutic interventions that may mitigate these outcomes. Recent studies have implicated the hyperphosphorylated tubulin-associated protein (tau) in rodent models of epilepsy and Alzheimer's disease, and in experimental and clinical studies of traumatic brain injury. This potentially represents a novel target to mitigate epilepsy and associated neurocognitive and psychiatric disorders post-brain injury. This article reviews the potential role of tau-based mechanisms in the pathophysiology of acquired epilepsy and its neurocognitive and neuropsychiatric comorbidities, and the potential to target these for novel disease-modifying treatments.
- Acquired epilepsy
- Hyperphosphorylated tau
- Neuropsychiatric comorbidities
- Post-status epilepticus
- Traumatic brain injury