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Dan Med J. 2013 May;60(5):B4635.

Prostaglandins and prostaglandin receptor antagonism in migraine.

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Department of Neurology, Danish Headache Center, Glostrup Hospital, Nordre Ringvej 67, 2600 Glostrup, Denmark.


Human models of headache may contribute to understanding of prostaglandins' role in migraine pathogenesis. The current thesis investigated the migraine triggering effect of prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) in migraine patients without aura, the efficacy of a novel EP4 receptor antagonist, BGC20-1531, in prevention of PGE2-induced headache and the ability of prostaglandin F2α (PGF2α) to trigger headache without any vasodilatation in healthy volunteers. All studies were designed as double-blind, placebo-controlled, cross-over experiments, where PGE2/PGF2α or saline were infused over 20-25 min. In the study with EP4 receptor antagonist healthy volunteers were pre-treated with two different doses of BGC20-1531 or placebo followed by PGE2 infusion over 25 min. The headache data were collected during the whole study day, whereas the possible vascular changes were measured during the in-hospital phase of 1.5 h. The infusion of PGE2 caused the immediate migraine-like attacks and vasodilatation of the middle cerebral artery in migraine patients without aura. The highly specific and potent EP4 receptor antagonist, BGC20-1531, was not able to attenuate PGE2-induced headache and vasodilatation of both intra- and extra-cerebral arteries. The intravenous infusion of PGF2α did not induce headache or statistically significant vasoconstriction of cerebral arteries in healthy volunteers. Novel data on PGE2-provoked immediate migraine-like attacks suggest that PGE2 may be one of the important final products in the pathogenesis of migraine. The lack of efficacy of EP4 receptor antagonist suggests that a single receptor blockade is not sufficient to block PGE2 responses, hence EP2 receptor should be investigated as a potential drug target for the treatment of migraine. The absence of headache during the PGF2α infusion demonstrates that vasodilating properties are necessary for the induction of headache and migraine.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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