Proto-oncogene transcription factors and epilepsy

Trends Pharmacol Sci. 1991 Sep;12(9):343-9. doi: 10.1016/0165-6147(91)90594-i.


Chemically and electrically induced seizures elicit the rapid transcriptional activation in neurons of a class of genes referred to as cellular immediate-early genes. Since the products of these genes include transcription factors and cytokines, they are proposed to be involved in coupling neuronal excitation to a complex, and poorly understood, programme of cellular responses that involves the regulation of gene expression. Products of two cellular immediate-early genes, c-fos and c-jun, are components of the transcription factor AP-1. In this review, Jim Morgan and Tom Curran discuss how these gene products have begun to reveal some of the molecular details of stimulus-transcription coupling in the nervous system following seizures. In addition, these genes have provided novel reagents and concepts for investigating the biochemical and cellular sequelae of seizure in the CNS, and point towards new avenues of research and potential therapeutic targets in epilepsy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Epilepsy / genetics*
  • Leucine Zippers
  • Proto-Oncogenes / genetics*
  • Transcription Factors / physiology*


  • Transcription Factors