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Papers of the Week

Papers: 9 Dec 2023 - 15 Dec 2023

2023 Nov 28

Int J Mol Sci




Dopaminergic Projections from the Hypothalamic A11 Nucleus to the Spinal Trigeminal Nucleus Are Involved in Bidirectional Migraine Modulation.


Li C, Li Y, Zhang W, Ma Z, Xiao S, Xie W, Miao S, Li B, Lu G, Liu Y, Bai W, Yu S


Clinical imaging studies have revealed that the hypothalamus is activated in migraine patients prior to the onset of and during headache and have also shown that the hypothalamus has increased functional connectivity with the spinal trigeminal nucleus. The dopaminergic system of the hypothalamus plays an important role, and the dopamine-rich A11 nucleus may play an important role in migraine pathogenesis. We used intraperitoneal injections of glyceryl trinitrate to establish a model of acute migraine attack and chronicity in mice, which was verified by photophobia experiments and von Frey experiments. We explored the A11 nucleus and its downstream pathway using immunohistochemical staining and neuronal tracing techniques. During acute migraine attack and chronification, c-fos expression in GABAergic neurons in the A11 nucleus was significantly increased, and inhibition of DA neurons was achieved by binding to GABA A-type receptors on the surface of dopaminergic neurons in the A11 nucleus. However, the expression of tyrosine hydroxylase and glutamic acid decarboxylase proteins in the A11 nucleus of the hypothalamus did not change significantly. Specific destruction of dopaminergic neurons in the A11 nucleus of mice resulted in severe nociceptive sensitization and photophobic behavior. The expression levels of the D1 dopamine receptor and D2 dopamine receptor in the caudal part of the spinal trigeminal nucleus candalis of the chronic migraine model were increased. Skin nociceptive sensitization of mice was slowed by activation of the D2 dopamine receptor in SP5C, and activation of the D1 dopamine receptor reversed this behavioral change. GABAergic neurons in the A11 nucleus were activated and exerted postsynaptic inhibitory effects, which led to a decrease in the amount of DA secreted by the A11 nucleus in the spinal trigeminal nucleus candalis. The reduced DA bound preferentially to the D2 dopamine receptor, thus exerting a defensive effect against headache.