Perugia, Italy: Patients with a history of migraine headaches may be suffering from a clinical deficiency of the endocannabinoid system, according to clinical trial data published in the European Journal of Clinical Pharmacology.
Investigators at Italy’s University of Perugia, Department of Public Health, reported that patients with chronic migraines possessed "significantly lower" levels of the endogenous cannabinoids anandamide and 2-arachidonylglycerol (2-AG) in their platelets compared to age-matched controls.
"These data support the potential involvement of a dysfunctioning of the endocannabinoid and serotonergic systems in the pathology of chronic migraine and medication-overuse headaches," researchers’ concluded.
A previous paper published in the journal Neuroendocrinology Letters similarly suggested that migraine, fibromyalgia, and other treatment-resistant conditions may be associated with dysfunctions in the endocannabinoid system. This system is believed to play a primary role in regulating humans' mood, appetite, skeletal development, motor coordination, digestion, and reproduction.
Full text of the study, "Endocannabinoids in platelets of chronic migraine patients and medication-overuse headache patients: relation with serotonin levels," appears in the November issue of the European Journal of Clinical Pharmacology.