Seizure suppression via glycolysis inhibition with 2-deoxy-D-glucose (2DG)


Address correspondence to Carl E. Stafstrom, M.D., Ph.D., Department of Neurology, University of Wisconsin, H6/528 CSC, 600 Highland Avenue, Madison, WI 53792, U.S.A. E-mail:


Metabolic regulation of neuronal excitability is increasingly recognized as a factor in seizure pathogenesis and control. Inhibiting or bypassing glycolysis may be one way through which the ketogenic diet provides an anticonvulsant effect. 2-deoxy-D-glucose (2DG), a nonmetabolizable glucose analog that partially inhibits glycolysis, was tested in several acute and chronic seizure models. Acutely, 2DG decreases the frequency of high-K+-, bicuculline- and 4-aminopyridine-induced interictal bursts in the CA3 region of hippocampal slices; 2DG also exerts anticonvulsant effects in vivo against perforant path kindling in rats. Chronically, 2DG has novel antiepileptic effects by retarding the progression of kindled seizures. Finally, 2DG has a favorable preliminary toxicity profile. These factors support the possibility that 2DG or other modifiers of glycolysis can be used as novel treatments for epilepsy.