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Neuroscience. 2009 Jun 30;161(2):327-41. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2009.03.019. Epub 2009 Mar 19.

Neurobiology of migraine.

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Headache Group, Department of Neurology, University of California, San Francisco, 505 Parnassus Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94143-0114, USA.


Migraine is a complex disorder of the brain whose mechanisms are only now being unraveled. It is common, disabling and economically costly. The pain suggests an important role of the nociceptive activation, or the perception of activation, of trigeminal cranial, particularly intracranial afferents. Moreover, the involvement of a multi-sensory disturbance that includes light, sound and smells, as well as nausea, suggests the problem may involve central modulation of afferent traffic more broadly. Brain imaging studies in migraine point to the importance of sub-cortical structures in the underlying pathophysiology of the disorder. Migraine may thus be considered an inherited dysfunction of sensory modulatory networks with the dominant disturbance affecting abnormal processing of essentially normal neural traffic.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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