Finding out the genetic cause of Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy
Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy / Posted 8 months ago
Epilepsy is a common neurological disorder affecting 1% of the population. There are over 30 types of epilepsy, some common, some rare. Most epilepsies arise in childhood and have a genetic cause. Approximately 40% of patients have the common forms of Genetic Generalised Epilepsy (GGE), and the commonest GGE is “Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy” or JME.
There is overwhelming evidence that JME is caused by changes in genetic code. These changes are likely to be found in more than just one gene and there may be more than one type of change. In order to find these changes we need to study a large number of people with JME and compare their genetic code with people who do not have epilepsy.
Finding the causes of JME will lead to better understanding of its cause, new treatments, and tailoring of treatments according to a person’s genetic make-up. The aim of this study is to find the genetic cause for JME by comparing the genetic code in JME patients with that in people who do not have epilepsy using clues from their electroencephalograph or brainwave test that is used to help diagnose epilepsy.
Inclusion Criteria :
- 1. Diagnosis of Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy in accordance with Consensus criteria
- 2. Age of myoclonus onset 10-25 years
- 3. Seizures comprising predominant or exclusive early morning myoclonus of upper extremities
- 4. EEG interictal generalized spikes and/or polyspike and waves with normal background
- 5. Current age 10-40 years
Exclusion Criteria :
- 1. Myoclonus only associated with carbamazepine or lamotrigine therapy
- 2. EEG showing predominant focal interictal epileptiform discharges or abnormal background
- 3. Any evidence of progressive or symptomatic myoclonus epilepsy or focal seizures
- 4. Global learning disability
- 5. Dysmorphic syndrome
- 6. Unable to provide informed consent
- Study end date : June 2026
- Wales-Based Study Contact : Please speak to your clinician
- Principal Investigator : Holly Crudgington (King's College London)