Alpha-substituted gamma-butyrolactones: new class of anticonvulsant drugs

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Science  10 Sep 1982:
Vol. 217, Issue 4564, pp. 1040-1042
DOI: 10.1126/science.6810462


Alkyl-Substituted gamma-butyrolactones were synthesized and tested for their convulsant and anticonvulsant actions in mice and guinea pigs. The alpha-substituted compounds, alpha, alpha-dimethyl-, and alpha-ethyl-alpha-methyl-gamma-butyrolactone were anticonvulsant compounds with a spectrum of activity similar to that of ethosuximide. In contrast, beta-substituted compounds were convulsant agents similar to picrotoxinin. The alpha-substituted-gama-butyrolactones represent a new class of anticonvulsant drug with experimental and clinical potential.