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Olivia Grech Research

Exploring physiological responses to cortical spreading depression in an acute brain slice model

May 28th, 2020


Headache is the second most disabling disorder in the world and amongst the most prevalent; however development of therapeutics is hampered by a lack of mechanistic knowledge.

Project Summary

Migraine and secondary headaches (including stroke and traumatic brain injury) are characterised by Cortical Spreading Depression (CSD), a phenomenon in which a wave of electrical activity slowly crosses the cortical region of the brain, causing changes in blood vessel constriction and release of potentially harmful signals and chemicals.

These changes are known to drive pain perception pathways thought to contribute to migraine headache. Previously, blocking this mechanism has translated to headache therapeutics, however little is known of the functional and metabolic consequences of CSD.

This project aims to develop a CSD model using a highly sensitive Multi-Electrode Array (MEA) recording system to investigate the consequences of CSD and develop therapies to block it.

This project will address a significant gap in knowledge surrounding headache mechanisms in addition to provide an efficient and translational model for headache research.

The Midland Neuroscience Teaching and Research Fund
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT
United Kingdom
01604 211074

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