Endogenous benzodiazepine receptor ligands in idiopathic recurring stupor

J. D. Rothstein, A. Guidotti, P. Tinuper, P. Cortelli, P. Avoni, G. Plazzi, E. Lugaresi, P. Montagna, P. Schoch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Scopus citations


"Endozepines" are endogenous ligands for the benzodiazepine recognition sites on gamma-aminobutyric acid A receptors in the nervous system. Idiopathic recurring stupor (IRS) is a syndrome of spontaneous stupor or coma that is not associated with known metabolic, toxic, or structural abnormalities but can be reversed by flumazenil, a pure benzodiazepine antagonist. We measured endozepine-2 and endozepine-4 by high-performance liquid chromatography and radioreceptor assay in serum and cerebrospinal fluid from three patients with IRS. During episodes of stupor there was a large (up to 300-fold compared with control patients) increase of endozepine-4 content in cerebrospinal fluid and serum, but a return to normal concentrations between attacks. Endozepine-4 may contribute to, or be the cause of, IRS. The reasons for abnormal concentrations of endozepine in blood and brain are unknown.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1002-1004
Number of pages3
JournalThe Lancet
Issue number8826
StatePublished - Oct 24 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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