The Thai Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences


Introduction: The worldwide high amount of multidrug-resistant epilepsy patients makes it urgent to find new approaches to treating, including the use of combinations of classic anticonvulsants with drugs that have an exclusively original mechanism of action, in particular digoxin. Objective: The aim of this work was to investigate the influence of low-dose cardiac glycoside digoxin on the anticonvulsant effect of carbamazepine and lamotrigine. Methods: Basic models of pentylenetetrazole- induced seizures and electroinduced paroxysms (maximal electroshock) in mice were used. Classic anticonvulsants were administered intragastrically in conditionally effective and sub-effective doses at 30 min, digoxin – subcutaneously at a dose of 0.8 mg/kg (1/10 LD50) at 15 min before seizures induction. Pentylenetetrazole at a dose of 80 mg/kg was administered subcutaneously. The maximal electroshock was reproduced by transmitting an electric current (strength – 50 mA, frequency – 50 Hz) through the corneal electrodes for 0.2 sec. Results: It was established that the co-administration of digoxin with carbamazepine and lamotrigine in sub-effective doses render a marked anticonvulsant action on the model of pentylenetetrazole-induced seizures as well as on seizures induced by maximal electroshock. Digoxin can reduce the doses of carbamazepine and lamotrigine with a corresponding reduction in the risk of side effects without compromising treatment efficacy. Conclusion: Digoxin can be a valuable component of complex therapy of epilepsy


Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Chulalongkorn University

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