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Neurol Sci. 2002 Apr;23(1):7-10.

Familial hemiplegic migraine: clinical features and probable linkage to chromosome 1 in an Italian family.

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  • 1Institute of Clinical Neurology, University of Bologna Medical School, Via Ugo Foscolo 7, I-40123 Bologna, Italy.


We describe an Italian family with familial hemiplegic migraine (FHM), subtle cerebellar signs and probable linkage to chromosome 1. FHM is genetically heterogeneous; in about 50% of families it is caused by mutations within the CACNA1A gene on chromosome 19. Linkage to 1q31 and 1g21-23 has also been established. Other families do not link either to chromosome 19 or 1. Chromosome 19-linked FHM may display nystagmus and cerebellar ataxia. Affected family members were neurologically examined; linkage analysis was performed with markers for chromosomes 19p13, 1q21-23, and 1q32. Five family members had hemiplegic migraine, and 3 displayed additional cerebellar signs (scanning speech and nystagmus). In 1 patient, episodes of hemiplegic migraine triggered by mild head trauma. Epilepsy and mental retardation were also found in 1 affected relative each. Lod scores for linkage to 19p13 were negative, while the maximum two-point lod score was 1.81 to 1q21-23. This family with FHM and associated subtle cerebellar signs, epilepsy and mental retardation showed probable linkage to 1q21-23.

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