Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Migraine Mice Exhibit Enhanced Excitatory Transmission At Cortical Synapses

Date:
March 12, 2009
Source:
Cell Press
Summary:
New research is unraveling the complex brain mechanisms associated with disabling migraine headaches. The study reveals that perturbation of the delicate balance between excitation and inhibition may make the brain more vulnerable to migraine attacks.

New research is unraveling the complex brain mechanisms associated with disabling migraine headaches. The study, published in the March 12th issue of the journal Neuron, reveals that perturbation of the delicate balance between excitation and inhibition may make the brain more vulnerable to migraine attacks.

Related Articles


The brain mechanisms that cause debilitating migraine headaches are not well understood. However, previous neuroimaging studies have suggested that the visual disturbance known as migraine aura is due to a phenomenon called cortical spreading depression (CSD). CSD is a wave of strong neuronal depolarization that slowly progresses across the cerebral cortex, generating a transient increase in electrical signals followed by a long-lasting neural suppression. It has also been suggested that CSD may trigger mechanisms that initiate the migraine headache.

Familial hemiplegic migraine (FHM) is a subtype of severe migraine with aura. Interestingly, recent animal studies have shown that mice carrying the mutation (FHM1) that causes human FHM are more susceptible to CSD. "Investigation of the cortical mechanisms that produce facilitation of CSD in the FHM mouse models may provide unique insights into the unknown mechanisms that lead to CSD susceptibility and initiate migraine attacks in human patients," offers senior study author Dr. Daniela Pietrobon from the Department of Biomedical Sciences at the University of Padova in Italy.

Dr. Pietrobon and colleagues found that calcium influx and subsequent glutamate release at cortical pyramidal cell synapses were increased in mice carrying the FHM mutation. Glutamate is the major excitatory neurotransmitter in the brain. The facilitation of induction and propagation of CSD in the FHM mice was completely eliminated when glutamate release was decreased to control levels. Importantly, in contrast with the enhanced excitatory neurotransmission, inhibitory neurotransmission was not altered in the migraine mice.

"Our findings provide direct evidence that enhanced glutamate release may explain the facilitation of CSD in the FHM mouse model. The differential effect of the FHM mutation at cortical excitatory and inhibitory synapses points to a perturbation of the excitation-inhibition balance and neuronal hyperactivity as the basis for episodic vulnerability to CSD ignition in migraine," explains Dr. Pietrobon.

The researchers include Angelita Tottene, University of Padova and CNR Institute of Neuroscience, Padova, Italy, Leiden University Medical Centre, Leiden, The Netherlands; Rossella Conti, University of Padova and CNR Institute of Neuroscience, Padova, Italy; Leiden University Medical Centre, Leiden, The Netherlands; Alessandra Fabbro, University of Padova and CNR Institute of Neuroscience, Padova, Italy; Dania Vecchia, University of Padova and CNR Institute of Neuroscience, Padova, Italy; Maryna Shapovalova, University of Padova and CNR Institute of Neuroscience, Padova, Italy; Mirko Santello, University of Padova and CNR Institute of Neuroscience, Padova, Italy; Arn M.J.M. van den Maagdenberg, Leiden University Medical Centre, Leiden, The Netherlands; Michel D. Ferrari, Leiden University Medical Centre, Leiden, The Netherlands; and Daniela Pietrobon, University of Padova and CNR Institute of Neuroscience, Padova, Italy.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Cell Press. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Cell Press. "Migraine Mice Exhibit Enhanced Excitatory Transmission At Cortical Synapses." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 March 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090311124018.htm>.
Cell Press. (2009, March 12). Migraine Mice Exhibit Enhanced Excitatory Transmission At Cortical Synapses. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 28, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090311124018.htm
Cell Press. "Migraine Mice Exhibit Enhanced Excitatory Transmission At Cortical Synapses." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090311124018.htm (accessed March 28, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

AAA: Distracted Driving a Serious Teen Problem

AAA: Distracted Driving a Serious Teen Problem

AP (Mar. 25, 2015) While distracted driving is not a new problem for teens, new research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety says it&apos;s much more serious than previously thought. (March 25) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smartphone Use Changing Our Brain and Thumb Interaction, Say Researchers

Smartphone Use Changing Our Brain and Thumb Interaction, Say Researchers

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Mar. 25, 2015) European researchers say our smartphone use offers scientists an ideal testing ground for human brain plasticity. Dr Ako Ghosh&apos;s team discovered that the brains and thumbs of smartphone users interact differently from those who use old-fashioned handsets. Jim Drury went to meet him. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Many Don't Know They Have Alzheimer's, But Their Doctors Do

Many Don't Know They Have Alzheimer's, But Their Doctors Do

Newsy (Mar. 24, 2015) According to a new study by the Alzheimer&apos;s Association, more than half of those who have the degenerative brain disease aren&apos;t told by their doctors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
A Quick 45-Minute Nap Can Improve Your Memory

A Quick 45-Minute Nap Can Improve Your Memory

Newsy (Mar. 23, 2015) Researchers found those who napped for 45 minutes to an hour before being tested on information recalled it five times better than those who didn&apos;t. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins