Neuroscience Letters, vol.765, 2021 (SCI-Expanded)
© 2021 Elsevier B.V.Absence epilepsy is classified as a childhood generalized epilepsy syndrome with distinctive electroencephalographic patterns. The Wistar Albino Glaxo originating from Rijswijk (WAG/Rij) strain is a very well validated animal model of absence epilepsy that also shows behavioral deficits. In addition to the gastrointestinal system, VIP is highly expressed throughout numerous brain regions, and it plays crucial roles as a neurotransmitter and as a neuromodulatory, neurotrophic and neuroprotective factor in both the central and peripheral nervous systems. In this study, adult WAG/Rij rats were divided into two groups (n = 10): a group that was administered VIP (25 ng/kg i.p.) every 2 days for 15 days and an age-matched control group that was administered physiological saline. Electrical brain activity and behavior (depressive- like behavior, learning and memory and anxiety) were investigated in both groups. In addition, the extracellular concentrations of GABA and glutamate and the GABA/glutamate ratio were measured by high-performance liquid chromatography in microdialysate samples collected from the somatosensorial cortex of WAG/Rij rats. Our results demonstrated that VIP treatment significantly suppressed the total duration and number of spike wave discharges in WAG/Rij rats. However, VIP had no significant effect on behavior. VIP increased the extracellular concentration of GABA and the GABA/glutamate ratio in the somatosensory cortex. In conclusion, VIP has suppressive effects on absence seizures, possibly by increasing the GABA concentration and inducing the transformation of glutamate to GABA in the somatosensory cortex of WAG/Rij rats.