A small study led by researchers at Johns Hopkins that looked at women with migraine has been published in the March issue of the journal Headache. “This study takes the first steps in identifying a potential biomarker for migraine that predicts treatment response and, we hope, can one day be used as a target for developing new and better migraine therapies,” says study leader B. Lee Peterlin, D.O., an associate professor of neurology and director of headache research at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.
Peterlin and her colleagues collected blood from 20 women during an acute migraine attack. The participants were given either sumatriptan/naproxen, or a placebo. Eleven women received the drug, and nine received the placebo. The researchers measured blood levels of ADP, a protein hormone secreted from fat tissue, and known to regulate pain pathways connected to migraine. Looking at the ADP levels, as well as two subtypes of total ADP, the researchers could identify who would be a responder to treatment, and who would not. “The blood tests could predict response to treatment”, said Peterlin. While she cautioned that larger studies are needed to verify this research, she is hopeful should ADP be a biomarker for migraine, it will help doctors identify who is likely to respond to which type of medication – and also help them make better medication choices, and try alternate drugs sooner….. Johns Hopkins Medicine 3/18/13