Turkish Journal of Medical Sciences




Background/aim: Metoclopramide is an effective and commonly used medication in acute migraine treatment but an experimental evidence base is lacking. We aimed to investigate the antimigraine effect of metoclopramide in a migraine model and whether the analgesic effect of metoclopramide was likely to be D2 receptor-mediated. Materials and methods: Cortical spreading depression (CSD) was used to model migraine in adult male Wistar rats. Five CSDs were induced by pinprick. Metoclopramide (two different doses), raclopride, or 0.9% saline were administered 30 min before CSD induction. Two hours after the experiments, brain tissues were examined for c-fos activation. Results: In metoclopramide groups brain stem c-fos expression was significantly lower than in the CSD side of the saline group (P = 0.002). In the raclopride group, ipsilateral brain stem c-fos expression was also lower than in the saline group (P = 0.002). No difference in c-fos expression in the ipsilateral trigeminal nucleus caudalis between the raclopride and metoclopramide groups was observed (P > 0.05). Conclusion: Metoclopramide is shown to suppress trigeminovascular activation for the first time, providing an experimental basis for its role in migraine. The analgesic effect of metoclopramide is likely to be mediated by D2 receptors since raclopride, a selective D2 receptor antagonist, suppresses trigeminovascular activation similarly.


Metoclopramide, trigeminal nucleus caudalis, D2 receptors, raclopride, trigeminovascular system, migraine, rat

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