Could sudden death syndrome (SDS) in chickens (Gallus gallus) be a valid animal model for sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP)?

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Scorza FA, de Albuquerque R, Arida RM, Schmidt B, de Almeida ACG, Scorza CA, and Cavalheiro EA (2009) Could sudden death syndrome (SDS) in chickens (Gallus gallus) be a valid animal model for sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP)? Med Hypotheses 73:1 67–9.

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Abstract: Epilepsy is the most common serious neurological disorder and approximately 1% of the population worldwide has epilepsy. Moreover, sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP) is the most important direct epilepsy-related cause of death. Information concerning risk factors for SUDEP is conflicting, but potential risk factors include: young age, early onset of epilepsy, duration of epilepsy, uncontrolled seizures, seizure frequency, AED number and winter temperatures. Additionally, the cause of SUDEP is still unknown; however, the most commonly suggested mechanisms are cardiac abnormalities during and between seizures. Similarly, sudden death syndrome (SDS) is a disease characterized by an acute death of well-nourished and seeming healthy Gallus gallus after abrupt and brief flapping of their wings and incidence of SDS these animals has recently increased worldwide. Moreover, the exactly cause of SDS in Gallus gallus is unknown, but is very probable that cardiac abnormalities play a potential role. Due the similarities between SUDEP and SDS and as Gallus gallus behavioral manifestation during SDS phenomenon is close of a tonic-clonic seizure, in this paper we suggest that epilepsy could be a new possible causal factor for SDS.

Context

  • This group has published a large number of speculative hypotheses regarding SUDEP with minimal evidence for each. For example, see Scorza et al.

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