[The significance of genetic and environmental factors for migraine with aura. A genetic epidemiologic study of Danish twins]

V Ulrich, M Gervil, K O Kyvik, J Olesen, M B Russell
Ugeskrift for Laeger 2000 January 10, 162 (2): 167-70
We studied the genetic and environmental influence on migraine with aura (MA) by analysing a twin population. The twin sample consisted of 2,026 monozygotic (MZ) pairs and 3,334 same-gender dizygotic (DZ) pairs recruited from the population-based Danish Twin Register. A total of 211 pairs were identified, of whom 77 were MZ and 134 were DZ. The pairwise concordance rate was significantly higher in MZ-than in DZ-pairs, i.e. 34% and 12%, respectively, emphasizing the importance of genetic factors in MA. However, environmental factors are also important, as the pair wise concordance rate was less than 100% in MZ-pairs. Similarly, the recurrence risk of MA was 50% in MZ- and 21% in DZ-pairs which was a significant difference. In non-twin siblings, the recurrence risk of MA is 27%, which is similar to the recurrence risk in DZ-pairs. This indicates that MA is not developed due to specific environmental factors shared by the twins.

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