I am a
Home I AM A Search Login

Papers of the Week

Papers: 1 Jun 2024 - 7 Jun 2024

2024 Jun 04



Region-specific changes in brain glutamate and gamma-aminobutyric acid across the migraine attack in children and adolescents.


Cho LY, Bell TK, Craddock L, Godfrey KJ, Hershey AD, Kuziek J, Stokoe M, Millar K, Orr SL, Harris AD


In patients with migraine, an excitation-inhibition imbalance that fluctuates relative to attack onset has been proposed to contribute to the underlying pathophysiology of migraine, but this has yet to be explored in children and adolescents. This prospective, observational, cohort study examined glutamate and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) levels across the phases of a migraine attack and interictally in children and adolescents using magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Macromolecule-suppressed GABA (sensorimotor cortex and thalamus) and glutamate (occipital cortex, sensorimotor cortex, and thalamus) were measured in children and adolescents (10-17 years) with a migraine diagnosis with or without aura 4 times over 2 weeks. Linear mixed-effects models examined changes in glutamate and GABA during the 72 hours leading up to, and after the onset of an attack. We found significant region-specific changes in glutamate and GABA. Specifically, sensorimotor GABA significantly increased leading up to the headache phase, whereas glutamate significantly decreased following the headache onset in the occipital cortex and the thalamus. Post hoc analyses examined the 24 hours leading up to or following the onset of the headache phase. In the 24 hours before the headache onset, sensorimotor glutamate, occipital glutamate, and thalamic GABA decreased. In the 24 hours post headache onset, sensorimotor glutamate continued to decrease. Our results suggest changes in glutamate and GABA that are consistent with the thalamocortical dysrhythmia hypothesis. These findings provide insight into developmental migraine pathophysiology and may open future avenues for treatment targets specific to children and adolescents.