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Pirttimäki T, Laakso H, Sierra A, Cunningham C, Liimatainen T, Gröhn O, DeRuisseau L.2018. Elevated end systolic function in a rat model of temporal lobe epilepsy. PeerJ Preprints6:e26999v1https://doi.org/10.7287/peerj.preprints.26999v1
Sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP) is a common cause of premature death amongst epilepsy patients. It is hypothesized to result from cardiorespiratory dysfunction, but the exact aetiology is unknown. The aim of this study was to determine if functional cardiovascular alterations were present in rats with chronic epileptic behaviour. Naive control rats were compared to a rat model of temporal lobe epilepsy that was induced using a repeated low-dose kainic acid (KA) protocol. The results indicate that end-systolic volume was significantly (p=0.01) higher in the epileptic group whilst end-diastolic volume did not reach significance (p=0.08). Ejection fraction, stroke volume, cardiac output, heart rate, body weight and heart size were also measured and appeared similar between groups. These initial data support the use cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (cMRI) to investigate cardiovascular changes across disease development of epilepsy-like behaviour, which may offer insight into understanding SUDEP.