Transition Metal Ions in Epilepsy: An Overview

  • S. H. Chung
  • B. Gabrielsson
  • D. K. Norris
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 203)


Several species of the transition elements of the first series are present throughout the central nervous system in trace quantities. The most reliable estimates of their concentrations in the brain are 27 ppm wet mass for Fe 2+, 16 ppm for Zn2+ 2.4 ppm for Cu2+, 0.05 ppm for Co2+ and 0.3 ppm Mn 2+. Little is known of the role of these transition metals in normal brain function although there are indications that they may participate in some aspects of synaptic transmission. Here we consider how abnormal brain levels of trace metals may be epileptogenic in that they enhance excitatory synaptic mechanisms and reduce inhibitory processes.


Glutamine Synthetase Transition Element Glutamate Dehydrogenase Mossy Fiber Kainic Acid 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. H. Chung
    • 1
  • B. Gabrielsson
    • 1
  • D. K. Norris
    • 1
  1. 1.National Institute for Medical ResearchMill Hill, LondonUK

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