Population-based approaches to genetics of migraine.

Authors: Chasman DI, Schürks M, Kurth T.

While the most accurate diagnosis of migraine typically requires a clinical interview guided by strict diagnostic criteria, an alternative approach that ascertains migraine by questionnaire in population-based settings has been instrumental in the discovery of common genetic variants influencing migraine risk. This result may be surprising. Population-based approaches are often criticized for limited ability to distinguish migraine from other forms of primary headache. It is thus useful to revisit prevailing ideas about population-based ascertainment of migraine to evaluate the extent to which this approach has potential for additional insights into migraine genetics and therefore pathophysiology.

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Sonja Schmidt