Familial influences on cortical evoked potentials in migraine

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CORTICAL information processing in migraine patients is impaired between attacks, showing deficient habituation of pattern-reversal visual evoked potentials (VEP), and strong intensity dependence of auditory cortical evoked potentials (IDAP). This could be a genetic trait as certain genetic patterns are known for evoked potentials in healthy subjects. We investigated VEP habituation and IDAP in 20 pairs of migraineurs made up of parents and their children. Using a Monte-Carlo statistical method, we selectively assessed vertical familial influences. VEP habituation and IDAP were abnormal in both parents and children. However, similarity was far more pronounced between related pairs than between unrelated pairs. Familial influences are highly significant in determinants of cortical information processing in migraineurs, hence supporting the important role of genetic factors.

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