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Role of phosphorylated extracellular signal-regulated kinase, calcitonin gene-related peptide and cyclooxygenase-2 in experimental rat models of migraine

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Although migraine is a common neurological condition, the pathomechanism is not yet fully understood. Activation of the trigeminovascular system (TVS) has an important function in this disorder and neurogenic inflammation and central sensitization are important mechanisms underlying this condition. Nitroglycerin (NTG) infusion in rats closely mimics a universally accepted human model of migraine. Electrical stimulation of the trigeminal ganglion (ESTG) of rats can also activate TVS during a migraine attack. Numerous studies have revealed that phosphorylated extracellular signalregulated kinase (pERK), calcitonin generelated peptide (CGRP) and cyclooxygenase2 (COX2) are involved in pain and nociceptive pathways. However, few studies have examined whether pERK, CGRP and COX2 are involved in neurogenic inflammation and central sensitization. In the present study, the expression of pERK, CGRP and COX2 was detected in the dura mater, trigeminal ganglion (TG) and spinal trigeminal nucleus caudalis in NTGinduced rats and ESTG models by immunohistochemistry. The three areas considered were crucial components of the TVS. The selective COX2 inhibitor nimesulide was used in ESTG rats to examine the association between pERK, CGRP and COX2. The results demonstrated that pERK, CGRP and COX2 mediated neurogenic inflammation and central sensitization in migraine. In addition, the expression of pERK and CGRP was attenuated by the COX-2 inhibitor.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Binzhou Medical University, Yantai, Shandong 264003, P.R. China 2: Department of Special Inspection, Binzhou People's Hospital, Binzhou, Shandong 256610, P.R. China 3: Department of Neurology, The Affiliated Hospital of Binzhou Medical University, Binzhou, Shandong 256603, P.R. China

Publication date: August 1, 2015

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  • Molecular Medicine Reports is a monthly, peer-reviewed journal available in print and online, that includes studies devoted to molecular medicine, underscoring aspects including pharmacology, pathology, genetics, neurosciences, infectious diseases, molecular cardiology and molecular surgery. In vitro and in vivo studies of experimental model systems pertaining to the mechanisms of a variety of diseases offer researchers the necessary tools and knowledge with which to aid the diagnosis and treatment of human diseases.
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