Migraine is considered a neurovascular disease affecting more than 10% of the general population. Currently available drugs for the acute treatment of migraine are vasoconstrictors, which have limitations in their therapeutic use. The calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) has a key role in migraine, where levels of CGRP are increased during acute migraine attacks. CGRP is expressed throughout the central and peripheral nervous system, consistent with control of vasodilatation and transmission of nociceptive information. In migraine, CGRP is released from the trigeminal system. At peripheral synapses CGRP results in vasodilatation via receptors on the smooth muscle cells. At central synapses, CGRP acts postjunctionally on second-order neurons to transmit pain centrally via the brainstem and midbrain to higher cortical pain regions. The recently developed CGRP-receptor antagonists have demonstrated clinical efficacy in the treatment of acute migraine attacks. A remaining question is their site of action. The CGRP-receptor components (calcitonin receptor-like receptor, receptor activity modifying protein 1 and receptor component protein) are found to colocalize in the smooth muscle cells of intracranial arteries and in large-sized neurons in the trigeminal ganglion. The CGRP receptor has also been localized within parts of the brain and the brainstem. The aim of this paper is to review recent localization studies of CGRP and its receptor components within the nervous system and to discuss whether these sites could be possible targets for the CGRP-receptor antagonists.
|Tidsskrift||Therapeutic Advances in Neurological Disorders|
|Status||Udgivet - nov. 2010|