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Cephalalgia. 2015 Oct;35(11):1025-30. doi: 10.1177/0333102414566860. Epub 2015 Jan 28.

Altered neurochemical coupling in the occipital cortex in migraine with visual aura.

Author information

1
Nuffield Department of Clinical Neuroscience, University of Oxford, UK Oxford Centre for Functional MRI of the Brain (FMRIB), University of Oxford, UK holly.bridge@ndcn.ox.ac.uk zameel.cader@ndcn.ox.ac.uk.
2
Nuffield Department of Clinical Neuroscience, University of Oxford, UK Oxford Centre for Functional MRI of the Brain (FMRIB), University of Oxford, UK Oxford Centre for Human Brain Activity, University of Oxford, UK.
3
Douglas Mental Health University Institute and Department of Psychiatry, McGill University, Canada.
4
Department of Neurology, Shin-Kong Wu Ho-Su Memorial Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan.
5
Oxford Centre for Functional MRI of the Brain (FMRIB), University of Oxford, UK.
6
Nuffield Department of Clinical Neuroscience, University of Oxford, UK Oxford Headache Centre, John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford, UK.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Visual aura is present in about one-third of migraine patients and triggering by bright or flickering lights is frequently reported.

METHOD:

Using migraine with visual aura patients, we investigated the neurochemical profile of the visual cortex using magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Specifically, glutamate/creatine and GABA/creatine ratios were quantified in the occipital cortex of female migraine patients.

RESULTS:

GABA levels in the occipital cortex of migraine patients were lower than that of controls. Glutamate levels in migraine patients, but not controls, correlated with the blood-oxygenation-level-dependent (BOLD) signal in the primary visual cortex during visual stimulation.

CONCLUSION:

Migraine with visual aura appears to disrupt the excitation-inhibition coupling in the occipital cortex.

KEYWORDS:

GABA; Migraine; glutamate; magnetic resonance spectroscopy; visual cortex

PMID:
25631169
DOI:
10.1177/0333102414566860
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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