Lasmiditan and 5-Hydroxytryptamine in the rat trigeminal system; expression, release and interactions with 5-HT1 receptors

Jacob C.A. Edvinsson, Aida Maddahi, Isabella M. Christiansen, Philip V. Reducha, Karin Warfvinge, Majid Sheykhzade, Lars Edvinsson, Kristian A. Haanes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: 5-Hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) receptors 1B, 1D and 1F have key roles in migraine pharmacotherapy. Selective agonists targeting these receptors, such as triptans and ditans, are effective in aborting acute migraine attacks and inhibit the in vivo release of calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) in human and animal models. The study aimed to examine the localization, genetic expression and functional aspects of 5- HT1B/1D/1F receptors in the trigeminal system in order to further understand the molecular sites of action of triptans (5-HT1B/1D) and ditans (5-HT1F). Methods: Utilizing immunohistochemistry, the localization of 5-HT and of 5-HT1B/1D/1F receptors was examined in rat trigeminal ganglion (TG) and combined with quantitative polymerase chain reaction to quantify the level of expression for 5-HT1B/1D/1F receptors in the TG. The functional role of these receptors was examined ex vivo with a capsaicin/potassium induced 5-HT and CGRP release. Results: 5-HT immunoreactivity (ir) was observed in a minority of CGRP negative C-fibres, most neuron somas and faintly in A-fibres and Schwann cell neurolemma. 5-HT1B/1D receptors were expressed in the TG, while the 5-HT1F receptor displayed a weak ir. The 5-HT1D receptor co-localized with receptor activity-modifying protein 1 (RAMP1) in Aδ-fibres in the TG, while 5-HT1B-ir was weakly expressed and 5-HT1F-ir was not detected in these fibres. None of the 5-HT1 receptors co-localized with CGRP-ir in C-fibres. 5-HT1D receptor mRNA was the most prominently expressed, followed by the 5-HT1B receptor and lastly the 5-HT1F receptor. The 5-HT1B and 5-HT1D receptor antagonist, GR127935, could reverse the inhibitory effect of Lasmiditan (a selective 5-HT1F receptor agonist) on CGRP release in the soma-rich TG but not in soma-poor TG or dura mater. 5-HT release in the soma-rich TG, and 5-HT content in the baseline samples, negatively correlated with CGRP levels, showing for the first time a physiological role for 5-HT induced inhibition. Conclusion: This study reveals the presence of a subgroup of C-fibres that store 5-HT. The data shows high expression of 5-HT1B/1D receptors and suggests that the 5-HT1F receptor is a relatively unlikely target in the rat TG. Furthermore, Lasmiditan works as a partial agonist on 5-HT1B/1D receptors in clinically relevant dose regiments.

Original languageEnglish
Article number26
JournalJournal of Headache and Pain
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2022
Externally publishedYes

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Other Clinical Medicine

Free keywords

  • 5-HT
  • CGRP
  • Lasmiditan
  • Migraine
  • Trigeminal system


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