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Ramih A. Nasser, Nahla A. AL-Bakri, Mohammad Oda Selman*


Background: Levetiracetam is a member of the new antiepileptic drugs and has a broad spectrum effect, used as an adjunctive therapy in addition to monotherapy in the treatment of partial onset-seizures. The effect of levetiracetam on the development of embryo nervous system after maternal exposure during pregnancy has not been identified. Objective: to evaluate the effect of antiepileptic drug, levetiracetam (LEV) within its therapeutic dose 350mg/Kg body weight on albino female rat to clarify its effect on the developing cerebral cortex histologically. Material And Methods: Ten pregnant female rats were separated into two groups, control group and experimental group. They were obtained from the animal house of the high institute of infertility diagnosis and assisted reproductive technologies/Al-Nahrain university. They were maintained in environmentally controlled room at a temperature of 21–28±4Cº, 40–60% humidity, 12 hours light-dark cycle, in a noise free environment. Oral administration of 350mg/Kg of LEV to the experiment group while physiologic saline was given to control group. Results: microscopic assessment of the cerebral cortex defects in the cerebrum of the treated group when compared with the control group. There was disorganization of the cortical layers where boundaries were dimmed, the depth of the six layers were overlapping, decreased proportion of the stellate cells in the external granular layer therefore, reducing layer outline, vascular congestion and hemorrhage. Furthermore, observation shows cellular degeneration, necrosis, and nucleus karyorrhexis. Conclusion: this study demonstrate that they must take care from giving Levetiracetam to pregnant female because it induces histological changes in the brain of the newborn rat.

Keywords: Levetiracetam, antiepileptic drugs, brain vascular congestion.

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