Advertisement

Plasma levels of neuroexcitatory amino acids in patients with migraine or tension headache

      Abstract

      Plasma amino acids were analysed in patients with migraine with (9) and without (80) aura, in patients with tension headache (14) and in controls (62). The neuroexcitatory amino acids glutamic acid, glutamine, glycine, cysteic acid and homocysteic acid were elevated in migraine patients while total thiols (cysteine/cystine) were reduced. Patients with tension headache had values which were similar to those of controls. Tryptophan was elevated in migraine patients without aura only. Studies on two patients showed that the raised resting excitatory amino acid levels became still further elevated during a migraine attack. These results show that high concentrations of neurotransmitter amino acids occur normally in migraine patients and suggest that this profile may be a contributory factor in migraine attacks. Tension headache, however, has different biochemical parameters.

      Keywords

      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'

      Subscribe:

      Subscribe to Journal of the Neurological Sciences
      Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
      Already an online subscriber? Sign in
      Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect

      References

        • Bridges R.J
        • Koh J.Y
        • Hatalski C.G
        • Cotman C.W
        Increased excitotoxic vulnerability of cortical cultures with reduced levels of glutathione.
        Eur. J. Pharmacol. 1991; 192: 199-220
        • Cananzi A.R
        • D'Andrea G
        • Perini F
        • Zamberlan F
        • Welch K.M
        Platelet and plasma levels of glutamate and glutamine in migraine with and without aura.
        Cephalalgia. 1995; 15: 132-135
        • D'Andrea G
        • Canduzi A.R
        • Joseph R
        • Morra M
        • Zamberlan F
        • Ferro Milone F
        • Grunfeld S
        • Welk K.M
        Platelet glycine, glutamate and aspartate in primary headache.
        Cephalalgia. 1991; 11: 197-200
        • Do K
        • Herling P
        • Streit P
        • Guenod M
        Release of neuroactive substances; homocysteic acid as an endogenous agonist of the NMDA receptor.
        J. Neurol. Trans. 1988; 72: 185-190
        • Ferrari M
        • Odink J
        • Capparelli C
        Serotonin metabolism in migraine.
        Neurology. 1989; 39: 1239-1242
        • Ferrari M.O
        • Odink J
        • Malessy M.J.A
        • Bruyn G.W
        Neuroexcitatory plasma amino acids are elevated in migraine.
        Neurology. 1990; 40: 1582-1586
        • Flint B.M
        Mechanisms of excitotoxicity in neurologic disease.
        FASEB J. 1992; 6: 3338-3344
        • Friedman A
        • Kaufer D
        • Shemer I
        • Hendler I
        • Soreq H
        Pyridostigmine brain penetration under stress enhances neuronal excitability and induced early immediate transcriptional response.
        Nature Med. 1996; 2: 1382-1385
        • Hirschberger L.L
        • Delavasa J
        • Stipamuk M.H
        Determination of cysteine sulfinate, hypotaurine and taurine in physiological samples by reversed-phase high performance liquid chromatography.
        J. Chromatogr. 1985; 343: 303-313
        • Kim J.P
        • Koh J
        • Choi D.W
        l-Homocysteate is a potent neurotoxin in cultured cortical neurons.
        Brain Res. 1987; 437: 103-110
        • Littlewood J.T
        • Glover V
        • Sandler M
        • Petty R
        • Reatfield R
        • Rose F.C
        Platelet phenolsulphotransferase deficiency in dietary migraine.
        Lancet. 1982; 1: 953-985
        • Marranes R
        • Willems R
        • De Prius E
        • Wanquier A
        Evidence for a role of the N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor in cortical spreading depression in the rat.
        Brain Res. 1988; 457: 226-240
        • Martinez F
        • Castillo J
        • Leira R
        • Prieto J.M
        • Lema M
        • Noya M
        Taurine levels in plasma and cerebrospinal fluid in migraine patients.
        Headache. 1993; 33: 324-327
        • Martinez F
        • Castillo J
        • Rodriguez J.R
        • Leira R
        • Noya M
        Neuroexcitatory amino acid levels in plasma and cerebrospinal fluid during migraine attacks.
        Cephalalgia. 1993; 13: 89-93
        • McDonald J.W
        • Johnston M.W
        Physiological and pathophysiological roles of excitatory amino acids during central nervous system development.
        Brain Res. Rev. 1990; 14: 41-70
        • Pheifer J.H
        • Briggs D.E
        The estimation of thiols and disulfides in barley.
        J. Inst. Brew. 1995; 101: 5-10
        • Porter R.H
        • Roberts P.J
        Glutamate metabotropic receptor activation in neonatal rat cerebral cortex by sulphur-containing excitatory amino acids.
        Neurosci. Lett. 1993; 154: 78-80
        • Rajur J
        • Welch K
        • D'Andrea G
        Serotinergic hypo-function in migraine.
        Cephalalgia. 1989; 9: 293-294
        • Reif-Lehrer L
        Chinese restaurant syndrome.
        Fed. Proc. 1976; 35: 2205-2211
        • van den Berg M
        • van der Knaap M.S
        • Boers G.H
        • Stehouwer C.D
        • Rauwerda J.A
        • Valk J
        Hyperhomocysteinaemia: with reference to its neuroradiological aspects.
        Neuroradiology. 1995; 37: 403-411