VIENNA, Austria — Preventive treatment with diamine oxidase (DAO), an enzyme that degrades histamine, significantly shortened the duration of migraine attacks and trended toward reducing the number of episodes.
Histamine is present in many foods, is released in allergic reactions, and is one of the chemical mediators that contributes to migraine. About 25% of the population may have an alteration in DAO that decreases its activity in breaking down histamine. The enzyme is expressed most in the intestine, kidney, and placenta.
“We diagnosed 137 patients who have a migraine, of whom 119 showed deficits of the activity of the enzyme, around 87% of the total patients that we have studied,” said Joan Izquierdo, MD, from the Faculty of Health Sciences at the International University of Catalonia and the neurology service at Catalonia General Hospital in Barcelona, Spain.
He said normal enzyme activity is a score of at least 80 histamine-degrading units [HDU]/mL. Read more…