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Lab Reports
July 2, 2008

Mutation Linked to Epilepsy

JAMA. 2008;300(1):33. doi:10.1001/jama.300.1.33-c

New findings point to a genetic cause for childhood absence epilepsy, an inherited disorder that accounts for 10% to 12% of epilepsy in children younger than 16 years (Tanaka M et al. Am J Hum Genet. 2008;82[6]:1249-1261). The condition is associated with frequent seizures with impaired consciousness that leaves a child unresponsive for up to 10 seconds at a time. Several medications are effective in controlling the majority of these absence seizures, which mysteriously disappear in adulthood.