Nine patients with migraine (5 with migraineous stroke) were investigated for defects of mitochondrial energy metabolism. During effort, blood lactate rose significantly higher in migraineurs. Muscle biopsy showed ragged-red fibres deficient in cytochrome-c-oxidase activity in one case. On muscle biochemistry, depression of some respiratory chain enzymes was found for the whole group of patients, and especially in 2 for cytochrome-c-oxidase, succinate-cytochrome-c-reductase and NADH-cytochrome-c-reductase.
Our findings are still preliminary, but they suggest impaired mitochondrial energy metabolism in migraine.