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The novel antiepileptic and neuroprotective drug felbamate (1 mM) caused a marked
inhibition of voltage-dependent Na+ currents expressed in Xenopus oocytes upon injection
of the cRNA encoding alpha-subunits from rat and human brain. This inhibition was
present only if felbamate was perfused on the intracellular side of the membrane.
In addition, felbamate seems to preferentially bind to and stabilize the inactivated
state of the channel, resembling the action of local anesthetics. This study provides
an additional mechanism by which felbamate might exert its wide-spectrum anticonvulsant
and neuroprotective action.