Thrombin as key mediator of seizure development following traumatic brain injury

Marina Ben Shimon, Efrat Shavit-Stein, Keren Altman, Chaim G. Pick, Nicola Maggio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Traumatic brain injury (TBI) commonly leads to development of seizures, accounting for approximately 20% of newly diagnosed epilepsy. Despite the high clinical significance, the mechanisms underlying the development of posttraumatic seizures (PTS) remain unclear, compromising appropriate management of these patients. Accumulating evidence suggest that thrombin, themain serine proteaseof the coagulation cascade, is involvedinPTSgenesis by mediating inflammation and hyperexcitability following blood brain barrier breakdown. In order to further understand the role of thrombin in PTS, we generated a combined mild TBI (mTBI) and status epilepticus mice model, by injecting pilocarpine to mice previously submitted to head injury. Interestingly, mTBI was able to reduce seizure onset in the pilocarpine animal model as well as increase the death rate in the treated animals. In turn, pilocarpineworsenedspatial orientation ofmTBI treatedmice. Finally, thrombin activity aswell as the expression of IL1-β and TNF-α was significantly increased in the mTBI-pilocarpine treated animals. In conclusion, these observations indicate a synergism between thrombin and mTBI in lowering seizure in the pilocarpinemodel and possibly aggravating inflammation. We believe that these results will improve the understanding of PTS pathophysiology and contribute to the development of more targeted therapies in the future.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1532
JournalFrontiers in Pharmacology
StatePublished - 2020


  • Epilepsy
  • Mild traumatic brain injury
  • N-Methyl-DAspartate (NMDA)
  • Protease activated receptor 1 (PAR1)
  • Thrombin


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