Status epilepticus (SE) is the brain insult most frequently used to induce epilepsy in all age groups of laboratory rodents. It triggers epileptogenesis in the majority of animals, causes brain damage and permanent behavioral abnormalities. The consequences of SE are dependent upon age, the model used, and SE duration. The outcome of experiments with this model is however highly affected by experimental conditions and methods used to assess selected parameters. Of particular importance is experimental design in a case of behavioral testing. Rodent behavioral testing has proven difficult and very labor intensive, as well as sensitive to environmental factors and test results may vary depending on many variables that are frequently reported insufficiently by experimenters. This makes comparison of results across laboratories complicated or even impossible. Although electrophysiology, neuropathology and molecular genetics represent key tools for understanding mechanisms underlying development of epilepsy and its comorbidities, behavior represents the final output of the CNS.
Therefore standardization of laboratory approaches, harmonization of scientific methodology, and improvement in data collection and reporting can improve the comparability of data among laboratories as well as the translation of preclinical data to clinical studies.