Lower level of endothelin-1 in migraine with aura

S. Komatsumoto, M. Nara

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6 Citations (Scopus)


Endothelin-1 (ET-1) exerts powerful vasoconstrictive and blood pressure elevating properties through endothelial cells. However, no systematic examination of ET-1 in migraine has ever been attempted. The present investigation was focused on evaluating the level of ET-1 in patients with migraine with aura. Studies on ET-1 were made in 17 patients with migraine with aura (age, 23.4±9.1 years old, mean±SD) according to the Classification of Headache of the Ad Hoc Committee. All patients had been free of migraine attacks for at least 7 days prior to the examination. Twenty-eight age-matched healthy volunteers (age, 23.0±12.3 years old) were similarly used as a control group. None of them revealed evidence of any other disease, such as hypertension, obesity, or heart disease. Informed consent was obtained from each subject. We measured the immumoreactive ET-1 in plasma by radioimmunoassay. The plasma level of ET-1 in migraine was 2.53±1.06 pg/ml. On the other hand, the level of ET-1 in the controls was 4.24±0.80 pg/ml. The ET-1 level in migraine was significantly lower than that in the controls (p<0.002). We also measured the level of ET-1 in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). There was no significant difference between migraine (23.2±3.10 pg/ml) and the control group (20.85±3.20 pg/ml). In conclusion, the lower plasma level of ET-1 observed in the patients with migraine is consisent with the pathogenesis of migraine, further supporting the hypothesis that a lower ET-1 may be closely related to marked vasodilatation following constriction partly due to a deficiency of ET-1 for maintaining vasoconstriction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1250-1252
Number of pages3
JournalClinical Neurology
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1996
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Neurology


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