Interestingly, the therapeutic effect of Iamotrigine is different from that of other anti-epileptic drugs that act on sodium channels., such as phenytoin and carbamazepine. For instance, Iamotrigine is effective in the treatment of childhood absence epilepsy. Moreover, it is suggested that administration of Iamotrigine, at a dosage of up to 100mg/kg, is effective in elevating cerbral taurine levels. Taurine is an inhibitory neurotransmitter, its main role being to help treat epilepsy and additional excitable brain states. Research shows that low taurine levels at seizure sites and its anti-convulsant effect comes from its ability to stabilise nerve cell membranes, which in turn prevents the erratic firing of nerve cells. In a 2001 study, researchers from the Neurological Department of Defence Research in Norway, wished to determine the effect of Iamotrigine therapy on cerebral amino acid metabolism i.e. taurine (Hassel, Tauboll & Gjerstad, 2001). This study showed that chronic lamotrigine treatment at doses up to 100mg/Kg of body weight causes a region specific increase in taurine levels. However, taurine administered at a dosage of 500mg three times daily may ellicit a similar response.
Hassel, B., Tauboll, E. & Gjerstad, L. 2001. Chronic Iamotrigine treatment increases rat hippocampal GABA shunt activity and elevates cerebral taurine levels. Epilepsy Research, 43, 153-163.