A protein involved in circadian rhythms, called CLOCK, may play a role in epilepsy, reports Medical News Today.

The corresponding author for the study was Dr. Judy Liu, an assistant professor of neurology at Brown University in Providence, RI. The results are published this week in the journal Neuron.

Dr. Liu studied brain tissue from eight patients with either focal cortical dysplasia or tuberous sclerosis complex.

Focal cortical dysplasia is one of the most common causes of epilepsy that does not respond to treatment. Tuberous sclerosis is a rare genetic condition that causes non-cancerous tumors to develop. If these tumors develop in the brain, it can cause epilepsy.