Open Access

The association between headache and Val158Met polymorphism in the catechol–O–methyltransferase gene: the HUNT Study

The Journal of Headache and Pain20067:281

DOI: 10.1007/s10194-006-0281-7

Received: 20 February 2006

Accepted: 21 March 2006

Published: 26 April 2006


The catechol–O–methyltransferase (COMT) gene contains a functional polymorphism, Val158Met, that has been found to influence human pain perception, and one study has found that migraine was less likely among those with the Val/Val polymorphism. In the 1995–97 Nord–Trøndelag Health (HUNT) Study, the association between the Val158Met polymorphism and headache was evaluated in a random sample of 2451 individuals. No association between Val158Met polymorphism and migraine was found. Among women, a lower prevalence of non–migrainous headache was found among individuals with the Val/Val genotype than among those with other genotypes (26.2% vs. 33.6%, p=0.04). That non–migrainous headache was less likely among women with the Val/Val genotype may be an incidental finding, but should be investigated in further studies.

Key words

Headache Migraine Population–based COMT gene Norway