Amy Oprean

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Caused by birth trauma, malformation, stroke, brain tumor or head injury and affecting as much as 1 percent of the population, epilepsy is one of the least understood human disorders in the most complicated of organs – the brain. Groundbreaking work to unlock the disease’s cure is in motion in the lab of Jeffrey Loeb, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor of neurology, member of the WSU/DMC Comprehensive Epilepsy Program and associate director of the Center for Molecular Medicine and Genetics in the School of Medicine. By applying a systems biology approach to the study of human epileptic brain tissue, Loeb and his team are working to identify a “final common pathway” of genes consistently induced at human epileptic foci. Using this pathway as a drug target, Loeb and his team will work to develop drugs that successfully prevent epilepsy, first in rats, then in humans.