Blood-brain barrier dysfunction, seizures and epilepsy

Semin Cell Dev Biol. 2015 Feb;38:26-34. doi: 10.1016/j.semcdb.2014.10.003. Epub 2014 Nov 6.


The blood-brain barrier (BBB) is a dynamic and complex system which separates the brain from the blood. It helps to maintain the homeostasis of the brain, which is essential for normal neuronal functioning. BBB function is impaired in several neurological diseases, including epilepsy in which it may lead to abnormal and excessive neuronal firing. In this review we will discuss how BBB dysfunction can affect neuronal function and how this can lead to seizures and epilepsy. We will also summarize new therapies that aim to preserve or restore BBB function in order to prevent or reduce epileptogenesis.

Keywords: Albumin; Blood–brain barrier; Epileptogenesis; Temporal lobe epilepsy; Traumatic brain injury.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Blood-Brain Barrier / physiology
  • Blood-Brain Barrier / physiopathology*
  • Epilepsy / drug therapy
  • Epilepsy / physiopathology*
  • Humans
  • Seizures / drug therapy
  • Seizures / physiopathology*