No Gastrointestinal Dysmotility in Transgenic Mouse Models of Migraine

Adam S. Sprouse Blum*, Brigitte Lavoie, Melody Haag, Seamus M. Mawe, Else A. Tolner, Arn M.J.M. van den Maagdenberg, Shih Pin Chen, Katharina Eikermann-Haerter, Louis Ptáček, Gary M. Mawe, Robert E. Shapiro

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Objective: To determine whether transgenic mouse models of migraine exhibit upper gastrointestinal dysmotility comparable to those observed in migraine patients. Background: There is considerable evidence supporting the comorbidity of gastrointestinal dysmotility and migraine. Gastrointestinal motility, however, has never been investigated in transgenic mouse models of migraine. Methods: Three transgenic mouse strains that express pathogenic gene mutations linked to monogenic migraine-relevant phenotypes were studied: CADASIL (Notch3-Tg88), FASP (CSNK1D-T44A), and FHM1 (CACNA1A-S218L). Upper gastrointestinal motility was quantified by measuring gastric emptying and small intestinal transit in mutant and control animals. Gastrointestinal motility was measured at baseline and after pretreatment with 10 mg/kg nitroglycerin (NTG). Results: No significant differences were observed for gastric emptying or small intestinal transit at baseline for any of the 3 transgenic strains when compared to appropriate controls or after pretreatment with NTG when compared to vehicle. Conclusions: We detected no evidence of upper gastrointestinal dysmotility in mice that express mutations in genes linked to monogenic migraine-relevant phenotypes. Future studies seeking to understand why humans with migraine experience delayed gastric emptying may benefit from pursuing other modifiers of gastrointestinal motility, such as epigenetic or microbiome-related factors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)396-404
Number of pages9
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Feb 2020


  • gastrointestinal motility
  • gastroparesis
  • headache
  • migraine


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