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Korean J Pediatr 2018 May;61(5) :150-155.
Published online 2018 May 15.       
Long-term prenatal stress increases susceptibility of N-methyl-D-aspartic acid-induced spasms in infant rats
Hyeok Hee Kwon1,2,3, Taekwan Lee3, Jinpyo Hong2,4, Dong Woon Kim1,2,4, Joon Won Kang1,3,4
1,2,3Department of Medical Science, College of Medicine, Chungnam National University, Daejeon, Korea
Department of Anatomy, College of Medicine, Chungnam National University, Daejeon, Korea
2,4Brain Research Institute, College of Medicine, Chungnam National University, Daejeon, Korea
3Department of Pediatrics, Chungnam National University Hospital, Chungnam National University School of Medicine, Daejeon, Korea
Corresponding Author: Joon Won Kang ,Tel: +82-42-280-8244, Fax: +82-42-255-3158, Email:
Copyright © 2018 by The Korean Pediatric Society
Purpose: Infantile spasms, also known as West syndrome, is an age-specific epileptic seizure. Most patients with this condition also exhibit delayed development. This study aimed to determine the effect of long-term prenatal stress on susceptibility to infantile spasms.
Methods: We subjected pregnant rats to acute or chronic immobilization stress. Resulting offspring received N-methyl-D-aspartic acid (15 mg/kg, intraperitoneally) on postnatal day 15, and their behaviors were observed 75 minutes after injection. The expression of KCC2 and GAD67 was also determined using immunohistochemistry.
Results: Exposure to long-term prenatal stress increased the frequency of spasms and decreased the latency to onset of spasms compared with offspring exposed to short-term prenatal stress. Expression of KCC2 and GAD67 also decreased in the group exposed to long-term prenatal stress compared with the group exposed to short-term prenatal stress.
Conclusion: Our study suggests that exposure to long-term prenatal stress results in increased susceptibility to seizures.
Keywords: Infantile spasms | Prenatal exposure delayed effects | Potassium-chloride symporters | Glutamate decarboxylase | Gamma-Aminobutyric acid
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