Browsing by Subject "NEUROPATHIC PAIN"

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  • Ludwig, Anastasia; Rivera Baeza, Claudio; Uvarov, Pavel (2017)
    Background: Cation-chloride cotransporters (CCCs) are indispensable for maintaining chloride homeostasis in multiple cell types, but K-Cl cotransporter KCC2 is the only CCC member with an exclusively neuronal expression in mammals. KCC2 is critical for rendering fast hyperpolarizing responses of ionotropic.-aminobutyric acid and glycine receptors in adult neurons, for neuronal migration in the developing central nervous system, and for the formation and maintenance of small dendritic protrusions-dendritic spines. Deficit in KCC2 expression and/or activity is associated with epilepsy and neuropathic pain, and effective strategies are required to search for novel drugs augmenting KCC2 function. Results: We revised current methods to develop a noninvasive optical approach for assessing KCC2 transport activity using a previously characterized genetically encoded chloride sensor. Our protocol directly assesses dynamics of KCC2-mediated chloride efflux and allows measuring genuine KCC2 activity with good spatial and temporal resolution. As a proof of concept, we used this approach to compare transport activities of the two known KCC2 splice isoforms, KCC2a and KCC2b, in mouse neuronal Neuro-2a cells. Conclusions: Our noninvasive optical protocol proved to be efficient for assessment of furosemide-sensitive chloride fluxes. Transport activities of the N-terminal splice isoforms KCC2a and KCC2b obtained by the novel approach matched to those reported previously using standard methods for measuring chloride fluxes.
  • Amorim, Diana; David-Pereira, Ana; Marques, Patricia; Puga, Sonia; Rebelo, Patricia; Costa, Patricio; Pertovaara, Antti; Almeida, Armando; Pinto-Ribeiro, Filipa (2014)
  • Vashchinkina, Elena; Piippo, Ossi; Vekovischeva, Olga; Krupitsky, Evgeny; Ilyuk, Ruslan; Neznanov, Nikholay; Kazankov, Kirill; Zaplatkin, Igor; Korpi, Esa R. (2018)
    The gabapentinoid pregabalin is a rapid-acting anxiolytic and analgesic, possibly suitable in supervised opioid detoxification. However, clinicians have been cautious in using it because of its unknown addictive risk and rising number of mortalities after pregabalin self-medication in opioid abusers. Here, we studied interactions of pregabalin and morphine on reward functions of the dopamine system in mice and the efficacy of pregabalin on withdrawal in opioid addicts. After the treatment of mice with pregabalin and morphine, we used electrophysiology to study neuroplasticity in midbrain slices, self-administration and conditioned place preference tests to investigate the rewarding potential of pregabalin and naloxone-precipitated morphine withdrawal to evaluate opioid withdrawal symptoms. Further, we ran a pilot single-blind, randomized, controlled trial (34 heroin addicts) to evaluate the efficacy and safety of pregabalin in the treatment of opioid withdrawal syndrome. Pregabalin alone did not induce glutamate receptor neuroplasticity of dopamine neurons in the ventral tegmental area, but pre-treatment with pregabalin suppressed morphine-induced neuroplasticity, hyperlocomotion and morphine self-administration. Pregabalin administration after chronic morphine exposure failed to induce any rewarding effects. Instead, pregabalin suppressed withdrawal symptoms in both morphine-treated mice and opioid addicts and was well tolerated. Intriguingly, pregabalin administration after a low dose of morphine strongly facilitated ventral tegmental area neuroplasticity and led to increased conditioned place preference. Pregabalin appears to have the efficacy to counteract both reinforcing and withdrawal effects of opioids, but it also has a potentiating effect when given to mice with existing opioid levels.
  • Chen, Zuyue; Wei, Hong; Sagalajev, Boriss; Koivisto, Ari; Pertovaara, Antti (2019)
    Background: The central amygdaloid nucleus (CeA) is involved in processing and descending regulation of pain. Amygdaloid mechanisms underlying pain processing and control are poorly known. Here we tested the hypothesis that perioperative CeA administration of tetrapentylammonium (TPA), a non-selective THIK-1 channel blocker and thereby inhibitor of microglia, attenuates development of chronic neuropathic pain and comorbid anxiety-like behavior. Methods: Rats with a spared nerve injury (SNI) model of neuropathy or sham operation had a chronic cannula for drug microinjections into the CeA or a control injection site. Monofilament test was used to evaluate pain, and light-dark box (LDB) to assess anxiety. Results: Perioperative CeA treatment with TPA (30 mu g/day up to the third postoperative day, D3) significantly attenuated the development of pain and anxiety-like behavior. In the late phase (> D14), CeA administration of TPA (3-30 mu g) failed to influence pain. Perioperative minocycline (microglia inhibitor; 25 mu g), MK-801 (an N-Methyl-D-aspartate receptor antagonist; 0.1 mu g), vehicle or TPA in a control injection site failed to attenuate pain development. Conclusions: Perioperative treatment of the CeA with TPA delayed development of neuropathic pain and comorbid anxiety-like behavior, while TPA treatment failed to influence maintenance of established neuropathic pain. The failures to attenuate pain development with CeA administrations of minocycline or MK-801 do not support the hypothesis that the TPA-induced prophylactic effect was due to inhibition of amygdaloid microglia or N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors. While TPA in the CeA proved to have a prophylactic effect on SNI-induced pain behavior, the underlying mechanism still remains to be studied. (c) 2018 Institute of Pharmacology, Polish Academy of Sciences. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
  • Rapo-Pylkkö, Susanna; Haanpää, Maija; Liira, Helena (2016)
    Objective: To present the occurrence, characteristics, etiology, interference, and medication of chronic pain among the elderly living independently at home. Design/setting: A total of 460 subjects in three cohorts aged 75, 80 and 85 years respectively received visits by communal home-care department nurses for a cross-sectional survey. Of them, 175 had chronic (duration 3 months) pain with an average intensity of 4/10 and/or moderate interference in daily life. Main outcome measures: Clinical assessment was performed for consenting subjects to define the location, intensity, etiology, type, interference and medications of chronic pain. Results: According to home visits, elderly people with chronic pain rated their health and mobility worse and felt sadder, lonelier and more tired than those without chronic pain. A geriatrician made clinical assessments for 106 patients with chronic pain in 2009-2013. Of them, 66 had three, 35 had two and 5 had one pain condition. The worst pain was musculoskeletal in 88 (83%) of patients. Pain was pure nociceptive in 61 (58%), pure neuropathic in 9 (8%), combined nociceptive and neuropathic pain in 34 (32%), and idiopathic in 2 (2%) patients. On a numerical rating scale from 0 to 10, the mean and maximal intensity of the worst pain was 5.7 and 7.7, respectively, while the mean pain interference was 5.9. Mean pain intensity and maximal pain intensity decreased by age. Duration of pain was longer than 5 years in 51 (48%) patients. Regular pain medication was used by 82 (77%) patients, most commonly paracetamol or NSAIDs. Although pain limited the lives of the elderly with chronic pain, they were as satisfied with their lives as those without chronic pain. Conclusions: Elderly people in our study often suffered from chronic pain, mostly musculoskeletal pain, and the origin of pain was neuropathic in up to 40% of these cases. However, elderly people with chronic pain rarely used the medications specifically for neuropathic pain. Based on increased loneliness, sadness and tiredness, as well as decreased subjective health and mobility, the quality of life was decreased among those with chronic pain compared with those without pain.
  • Kringel, Dario; Kaunisto, Mari A.; Lippmann, Catharina; Kalso, Eija; Lötsch, Jörn (2018)
    Background: Many gene variants modulate the individual perception of pain and possibly also its persistence. The limited selection of single functional variants is increasingly being replaced by analyses of the full coding and regulatory sequences of pain-relevant genes accessible by means of next generation sequencing (NGS). Methods: An NGS panel was created for a set of 77 human genes selected following different lines of evidence supporting their role in persisting pain. To address the role of these candidate genes, we established a sequencing assay based on a custom AmpliSeq (TM) panel to assess the exomic sequences in 72 subjects of Caucasian ethnicity. To identify the systems biology of the genes, the biological functions associated with these genes were assessed by means of a computational over-representation analysis. Results: Sequencing generated a median of 2.85 . 10(6) reads per run with a mean depth close to 200 reads, mean read length of 205 called bases and an average chip loading of 71%. A total of 3,185 genetic variants were called. A computational functional genomics analysis indicated that the proposed NGS gene panel covers biological processes identified previously as characterizing the functional genomics of persisting pain. Conclusion: Results of the NGS assay suggested that the produced nucleotide sequences are comparable to those earned with the classical Sanger sequencing technique. The assay is applicable for small to large-scale experimental setups to target the accessing of information about any nucleotide within the addressed genes in a study cohort.
  • Jokinen, Viljami; Sidorova, Yulia; Viisanen, Hanna; Suleymanova, Ilida; Tiilikainen, Henna; Li, Zhilin; Lilius, Tuomas O.; Matlik, Kert; Anttila, Jenni E.; Airavaara, Mikko; Tian, Li; Rauhala, Pekka V.; Kalso, Eija A. (2018)
    Development of tolerance is a well known pharmacological characteristic of opioids and a major clinical problem. In addition to the known neuronal mechanisms of opioid tolerance, activation of glia has emerged as a potentially significant new mechanism. We studied activation of microglia and astrocytes in morphine tolerance and opioid-induced hyperalgesia in rats using immunohistochemistry, flow cytometry and RNA sequencing in spinal-and supraspinal regions. Chronic morphine treatment that induced tolerance and hyperalgesia also increased immunoreactivity of spinal microglia in the dorsal and ventral horns. Flow cytometry demonstrated that morphine treatment increased the proportion of M2-polarized spinal microglia, but failed to impact the number or the proportion of M1-polarized microglia. In the transcriptome of microglial cells isolated from the spinal cord (SC), morphine treatment increased transcripts related to cell activation and defense response. In the studied brain regions, no activation of microglia or astrocytes was detected by immunohistochemistry, except for a decrease in the number of microglial cells in the substantia nigra. In flow cytometry, morphine caused a decrease in the number of microglial cells in the medulla, but otherwise no change was detected for the count or the proportion of M1-and M2-polarized microglia in the medulla or sensory cortex. No evidence for the activation of glia in the brain was seen. Our results suggest that glial activation associated with opioid tolerance and opioid-induced hyperalgesia occurs mainly at the spinal level. The transcriptome data suggest that the microglial activation pattern after chronic morphine treatment has similarities with that of neuropathic pain. (C) 2018 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
  • Barrouin-Melo, Stella Maria; Anturaniemi (o.s. Roine), Johanna; Sankari, Satu; Griinari, Mikko; Atroshi, Faik; Ounjaijean, Sakaewan; Hielm-Bjorkman, Anna Katrina (2016)
    Background: Oxidative stress plays an important role in the pathogenesis of disease, and the antioxidant physiological effect of omega-3 from fish oil may lead to improvement of canine spontaneous osteoarthritis (OA). Methods: In this prospective randomized, controlled, double-blinded study, we assessed haematological and biochemical parameters in dogs with OA following supplementation with either a concentrated omega-3 deep sea fish oil product or corn oil. Blood samples from 77 client-owned dogs diagnosed as having OA were taken before (baseline) and 16 weeks after having orally ingested 0.2 ml/Kg bodyweight/day of deep sea fish oil or corn oil. Circulating malondialdehyde (MDA), glutathione (GSH), non-transferrin bound iron (NTBI), free carnitine (Free-Car), 8-hydroxy-2-deoxyguanosine (8-OH-dG), and serum fatty acids, haemograms and serum biochemistry were evaluated. Differences within and between groups from baseline to end, were analysed using repeated samples T-test or Wilcoxon rank test and independent samples T-test or a Mann-Whitney test. Results: Supplementation with fish oil resulted in a significant reduction from day 0 to day 112 in MDA (from 3.41 +/- 1.34 to 2.43 +/- 0.92 mu mol/L; P <0.001) and an elevation in Free-Car (from 18.18 +/- 9.78 to 21.19 +/- 9.58 mu mol/L; P = 0.004) concentrations, whereas dogs receiving corn oil presented a reduction in MDA (from 3.41 +/- 1.34 to 2.41 +/- 1.01 mu mol/L; P = 0.001) and NTBI (from -1.25 +/- 2.17 to -2.31 +/- 1.64 mu mol/L; P = 0.002). Both groups showed increased (albeit not significantly) GSH and 8-OH-dG blood values. Dogs supplemented with fish oil had a significant reduction in the proportions of monocytes (from 3.84 +/- 2.50 to 1.77 +/- 1.92 %; P = 0.030) and basophils (from 1.47 +/- 1.22 to 0.62 +/- 0.62 %; P = 0.012), whereas a significant reduction in platelets counts (from 316.13 +/- 93.83 to 288.41 +/- 101.68 x 10(9)/L; P = 0.029), and an elevation in glucose (from 5.18 +/- 0.37 to 5.32 +/- 0.47 mmol/L; P = 0.041) and cholesterol (from 7.13 +/- 1.62 to 7.73 +/- 2.03 mmol/L; P = 0.011) measurements were observed in dogs receiving corn oil. Conclusions: In canine OA, supplementation with deep sea fish oil improved diverse markers of oxidative status in the dogs studied. As corn oil also contributed to the reduction in certain oxidative markers, albeit to a lesser degree, there was no clear difference between the two oil groups. No clinical, haematological or biochemical evidence of side effects emerged related to supplementation of either oil. Although a shift in blood fatty acid values was apparent due to the type of nutraceutical product given to the dogs, corn oil seems not to be a good placebo.
  • Amorim, Diana; Viisanen, Hanna; Wei, Hong; Almeida, Armando; Pertovaara, Antti; Pinto-Ribeiro, Filipa (2015)
    Activation of the dorsomedial nucleus of the hypothalamus (DMH) by galanin (GAL) induces behavioural hyperalgesia. Since DMH neurones do not project directly to the spinal cord, we hypothesized that the medullary dorsal reticular nucleus (DRt), a pronociceptive region projecting to the spinal dorsal horn (SDH) and/or the serotoninergic raphe-spinal pathway acting on the spinal 5-HT3 receptor (5HT(3)R) could relay descending nociceptive facilitation induced by GAL in the DMH. Heat-evoked paw-withdrawal latency (PWL) and activity of SDH neurones were assessed in monoarthritic (ARTH) and control (SHAM) animals after pharmacological manipulations of the DMH, DRt and spinal cord. The results showed that GAL in the DMH and glutamate in the DRt lead to behavioural hyperalgesia in both SHAM and ARTH animals, which is accompanied particularly by an increase in heat-evoked responses of wide-dynamic range neurons, a group of nociceptive SDH neurones. Facilitation of pain behaviour induced by GAL in the DMH was reversed by lidocaine in the DRt and by ondansetron, a 5HT(3)R antagonist, in the spinal cord. However, the hyperalgesia induced by glutamate in the DRt was not blocked by spinal ondansetron. In addition, in ARTH but not SHAM animals PWL was increased after lidocaine in the DRt and ondansetron in the spinal cord. Our data demonstrate that GAL in the DMH activates two independent descending facilitatory pathways: (i) one relays in the DRt and (ii) the other one involves 5-HT neurones acting on spinal 5HT(3)Rs. In experimental ARTH, the tonic pain-facilitatory action is increased in both of these descending pathways.
  • Sandholm, Niina; Groop, Per-Henrik (2018)
    Diabetic kidney disease and other long-term complications are common in diabetes, and comprise the main cause of co-morbidity and premature mortality in individuals with diabetes. While familial clustering and heritability have been reported for all diabetic complications, the genetic background and the molecular mechanisms remain poorly understood. In recent years, genome-wide association studies have identified a few susceptibility loci for the renal complications as well as for diabetic retinopathy, diabetic cardiovascular disease and mortality. As for many complex diseases, the genetic factors increase the risk of complications in concert with the environment, and certain associations seem specific for particular conditions, for example, SP3-CDCA7 associated with end-stage renal disease only in women, or MGMT and variants on chromosome 5q13 associated with cardiovascular mortality only under tight glycaemic control. The characterization of the phenotypes is one of the main challenges for genetic research on diabetic complications, in addition to an urgent need to increase the number of individuals with diabetes with high quality phenotypic data to be included in future genetic studies.
  • Kambur, Oleg; Kaunisto, Mari A.; Winsvold, Bendik S.; Wilsgaard, Tom; Stubhaug, Audun; Zwart, John A.; Kalso, Eija; Nielsen, Christopher S. (2018)
    P2X7 is a nonselective cation channel activated by extracellular ATP. P2X7 activation contributes to the proinflammatory response to injury or bacterial invasion and mediates apoptosis. Recently, P2X7 function has been linked to chronic inflammatory and neuropathic pain. P2X7 may contribute to pain modulation both by effects on peripheral tissue injury underlying clinical pain states, and through alterations in central nervous system processing, as suggested by animal models. To further test its role in pain sensitivity, we examined whether variation within the P2RX7 gene, which encodes the P2X7 receptor, was associated with experimentally induced pain in human patients. Experimental pain was assessed in Tromso 6, a longitudinal and cross-sectional population-based study (N = 3016), and the BrePainGen cohort, consisting of patients who underwent breast cancer surgery (N = 831). For both cohorts, experimental pain intensity and tolerance were assessed with the cold-pressor test. In addition, multisite chronic pain was assessed in Tromso 6 and pain intensity 1 week after surgery was assessed in BrePainGen. We tested whether the single-nucleotide polymorphism rs7958311, previously implicated in clinical pain, was associated with experimental and clinical pain phenotypes. In addition, we examined effects of single-nucleotide polymorphisms rs208294 and rs208296, for which previous results have been equivocal. Rs7958311 was associated with experimental pain intensity in the meta-analysis of both cohorts. Significant associations were also found for multisite pain and postoperative pain. Our results strengthen the existing evidence and suggest that P2X7 and genetic variation in the P2RX7-gene may be involved in the modulation of human pain sensitivity.
  • Palada, Vinko; Kaunisto, Mari A.; Kalso, Eija (2018)
    Purpose of reviewThe review describes recent advances in genetics and genomics of postoperative pain, the association between genetic variants and the efficacy of analgesics, and the role of pharmacogenomics in the selection of appropriate analgesic treatments for postoperative pain.Recent findingsRecent genetic studies have reported associations of genetic variants in catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT), brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), voltage-gated channel alpha subunit 11 (SCN11A) and -opioid receptor (OPRM1) genes with postoperative pain. The recent pharmacogenetics studies revealed an association of the organic cation transporter 1 (OCT1) and ATP-binding cassette C3 (ABCC3) polymorphisms with morphine-related adverse effects, an effect of polymorphisms in cytochrome P450 gene CYP2D6 on the analgesic efficacy of tramadol and no effect of CYP2C8 and CYP2C9 variants on efficacy of piroxicam.SummaryGenetic variants associate with inter-individual variability in drug responses and they can affect pain sensitivity and intensity of postoperative pain. Despite the recent progress in genetics and genomics of postoperative pain, it is still not possible to precisely predict the patients who are genetically predisposed to have severe postoperative pain or who develop chronic postoperative pain.
  • Kotliarova, Anastasiia; Sidorova, Yulia A. (2021)
    Well-known effects of neurotrophic factors are related to supporting the survival and functioning of various neuronal populations in the body. However, these proteins seem to also play less well-documented roles in glial cells, thus, influencing neuroinflammation. This article summarizes available data on the effects of glial cell line derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) family ligands (GFLs), proteins providing trophic support to dopaminergic, sensory, motor and many other neuronal populations, in non-neuronal cells contributing to the development and maintenance of neuropathic pain. The paper also contains our own limited data describing the effects of small molecules targeting GFL receptors on the expression of the satellite glial marker IBA1 in dorsal root ganglia of rats with surgery- and diabetes-induced neuropathy. In our experiments activation of GFLs receptors with either GFLs or small molecule agonists downregulated the expression of IBA1 in this tissue of experimental animals. While it can be a secondary effect due to a supportive role of GFLs in neuronal cells, growing body of evidence indicates that GFL receptors are expressed in glial and peripheral immune system cells. Thus, targeting GFL receptors with either proteins or small molecules may directly suppress the activation of glial and immune system cells and, therefore, reduce neuroinflammation. As neuroinflammation is considered to be an important contributor to the process of neurodegeneration these data further support research efforts to modulate the activity of GFL receptors in order to develop disease-modifying treatments for neurodegenerative disorders and neuropathic pain that target both neuronal and glial cells.
  • Mahato, Arun Kumar; Sidorova, Yulia A. (2020)
    Rearranged during transfection (RET), in complex with glial cell line-derived (GDNF) family receptor alpha (GFR alpha), is the canonical signaling receptor for GDNF family ligands (GFLs) expressed in both central and peripheral parts of the nervous system and also in non-neuronal tissues. RET-dependent signaling elicited by GFLs has an important role in the development, maintenance and survival of dopamine and sensory neurons. Both Parkinson's disease and neuropathic pain are devastating disorders without an available cure, and at the moment are only treated symptomatically. GFLs have been studied extensively in animal models of Parkinson's disease and neuropathic pain with remarkable outcomes. However, clinical trials with recombinant or viral vector-encoded GFL proteins have produced inconclusive results. GFL proteins are not drug-like; they have poor pharmacokinetic properties and activate multiple receptors. Targeting RET and/or GFR alpha with small molecules may resolve the problems associated with using GFLs as drugs and can result in the development of therapeutics for disease-modifying treatments against Parkinson's disease and neuropathic pain.
  • Tommola, Paivi; Unkila-Kallio, Leila; Paetau, Anders; Meri, Seppo; Kalso, Eija; Paavonen, Jorma (2016)
    BACKGROUND: Provoked vestibulodynia manifests as allodynia of the vulvar vestibular mucosa. The exact mechanisms that result in altered pain sensation are unknown. Recently, we demonstrated the presence of secondary lymphoid tissue, which is the vestibule-associated lymphoid tissue in the vestibular mucosa, and showed that this tissue becomes activated in provoked vestibulodynia. OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to examine whether expression of intraepithelial nerve fibers and nerve growth factor are related to immune activation in provoked vestibulodynia. STUDY DESIGN: Vestibular mucosal specimens were obtained from 27 patients with severe provoked vestibulodynia that was treated by vestibulectomy and from 15 control subjects. We used antibodies against the protein gene product 9.5, the neuron specific neurofilament, and nerve growth factor for immunohistochemistry to detect intraepithelial nerve fibers and nerve growth factor expressing immune cells in the vestibular mucosa. For intraepithelial nerve fibers, we determined their linear density (fiber counts per millimeter of the outer epithelial surface, protein gene product 9.5) or presence (neuron specific neurofilament). Nerve growth factor was analyzed by counting the staining-positive immune cells. Antibodies against CD20 (B lymphocytes) and CD3 (T lymphocytes) were used to identify and locate mucosal areas with increased density of lymphocytes and the presence of germinal centers (ie, signs of immune activation). B-cell activation index was used to describe the overall intensity of B-cell infiltration. RESULTS: We found more protein gene product 9.5-positive intraepithelial fibers in vestibulodynia than in the control samples (6.3/mm [range, 0.0-15.8] vs 2.0/mm [range, 0.0-12.0]; P = .006). Neuron specific neurofilament -positive intraepithelial fibers were found in 17 of 27 vestibulodynia cases (63.0%) and in none of the control cases. Protein gene product 9.5-positive intraepithelial fibers were more common in samples with more pronounced immune activation. The density of these fibers was higher in samples with than without germinal centers (6.1/mm [range, 4.3-15.8] vs 3.0/mm [range, 0.0-13.4]; P = .020). A positive correlation between the fiber density and B-cell activation index score of the sample was found (Spearman's Rho, 0.400; P = .004; R-2 = 0.128). No significant difference, however, was found in the density or presence of nerve fibers between samples with high and low T-cell densities. We identified areas of minor and major vestibular glands in 16 of the patient samples and in 1 control sample. Protein gene product 9.5-positive nerve fibers were found more often in glandular epithelium surrounded by B-cell infiltration than in glands without B cells (P = .013). Also, the presence of neuron specific neurofilament-positive fibers in glandular epithelium was associated with B-cell infiltrates (P = .053). Nerve growth factor-positive immune cells were more common in mucosal areas with than without B-cell infiltration and intraepithelial nerve fibers. CONCLUSION: Excessive epithelial nerve growth in provoked vestibulodynia is associated with increased B-cell infiltration and the presence of germinal centers. This supports the fundamental role of immune activation in provoked vestibulodynia.
  • Antila, Hanna; Ryazantseva, Maria; Popova, Dina; Sipilä, Pia; Guirado, Ramon; Kohtala, Samuel; Yalcin, Ipek; Lindholm, Jesse; Vesa, Liisa; Sato, Vinicius; Cordeira, Joshua; Autio, Henri; Kislin, Mikhail; Rios, Maribel; Joca, Samia; Casarotto, Plinio; Khiroug, Leonard; Lauri, Sari; Taira, Tomi; Castren, Eero; Rantamäki, Tomi (2017)
    A brief burst-suppressing isoflurane anesthesia has been shown to rapidly alleviate symptoms of depression in a subset of patients, but the neurobiological basis of these observations remains obscure. We show that a single isoflurane anesthesia produces antidepressant-like behavioural effects in the learned helplessness paradigm and regulates molecular events implicated in the mechanism of action of rapid-acting antidepressant ketamine: activation of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) receptor TrkB, facilitation of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) signaling pathway and inhibition of glycogen synthase kinase 3 beta (GSK3 beta). Moreover, isoflurane affected neuronal plasticity by facilitating long-term potentiation in the hippocampus. We also found that isoflurane increased activity of the parvalbumin interneurons, and facilitated GABAergic transmission in wild type mice but not in transgenic mice with reduced TrkB expression in parvalbumin interneurons. Our findings strengthen the role of TrkB signaling in the antidepressant responses and encourage further evaluation of isoflurane as a rapid-acting antidepressant devoid of the psychotomimetic effects and abuse potential of ketamine.
  • Humo, Muris; Ayazgok, Beyza; Becker, Lea J.; Waltisperger, Elisabeth; Rantamäki, Tomi; Yalcin, Ipek (2020)
    Chronic pain produces psychologic distress, which often leads to mood disorders such as depression. Co-existing chronic pain and depression pose a serious socio-economic burden and result in disability affecting millions of individuals, which urges the development of treatment strategies targeting this comorbidity. Ketamine, a noncompetitive antagonist of the N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor, is shown to be efficient in treating both pain and depression-related symptoms. However, the molecular characteristics of its role in chronic pain-induced depression remain largely unexplored. Hence, we studied the behavioral and molecular effects of a single systemic administration of ketamine (15 mg/kg, i.p.) on mechanical hypersensitivity and depressive-like consequences of chronic neuropathic pain. We showed that ketamine transiently alleviated mechanical hypersensitivity (lasting
  • Bell, Rae Frances; Moreira, Vânia M.; Kalso, Eija; Yli-Kauhaluoma, Jari (2021)
    Liquorice has a long history of use in traditional Chinese, Ayurvedic and herbal medicine. The liquorice plant contains numerous bioactive compounds, including triterpenes, flavonoids and secondary metabolites, with glycyrrhizin being the main active compound. Liquorice constituents have been found to have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antiviral, anticancer, hepatoprotective and neuroprotective properties. In addition, they appear to have antidepressant actions and effects on morphine tolerance. Glycyrrhizin, its metabolite glycyrrhetic (glycyrrhetinic) acid and other liquorice-derived compounds such as isoflavonoids and trans-chalcones, exert potent anti-inflammatory effects via a wide range of mechanisms including high mobility group box 1 protein (HMGB1) inhibition, gap junction blockade and alpha(2A)-adrenoceptor antagonism. These properties, together with an increasing body of preclinical studies and a long history of use in herbal medicine, suggest that liquorice constituents may be useful for pain management. Glycyrrhizin is used widely in the confectionary, food and tobacco industries, but has documented adverse effects that may limit clinical use. Whether liquorice plant-derived compounds represent a novel class of analgesics is yet to be established. Having a host of bioactive compounds with a broad range of mechanisms of effect, liquorice is a plant that, in the future, may give rise to new therapies for pain.
  • Kringel, Dario; Kaunisto, Mari A.; Kalso, Eija; Lötsch, Jörn (2019)
    Background Glial cells in the central nervous system play a key role in neuroinflammation and subsequent central sensitization to pain. They are therefore involved in the development of persistent pain. One of the main sites of interaction of the immune system with persistent pain has been identified as neuro-immune crosstalk at the glial-opioid interface. The present study examined a potential association between the DNA methylation of two key players of glial/opioid intersection and persistent postoperative pain. Methods In a cohort of 140 women who had undergone breast cancer surgery, and were assigned based on a 3-year follow-up to either a persistent or non-persistent pain phenotype, the role of epigenetic regulation of key players in the glial-opioid interface was assessed. The methylation of genes coding for the Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) as a major mediator of glial contributions to persistent pain or for the mu-opioid receptor (OPRM1) was analyzed and its association with the pain phenotype was compared with that conferred by global genome-wide DNA methylation assessed via quantification of the methylation in the retrotransposon LINE1. Results Training of machine learning algorithms indicated that the global DNA methylation provided a similar diagnostic accuracy for persistent pain as previously established non-genetic predictors. However, the diagnosis can be based on a single DNA based marker. By contrast, the methylation of TLR4 or OPRM1 genes could not contribute further to the allocation of the patients to the pain-related phenotype groups. Conclusions While clearly supporting a predictive utility of epigenetic testing, the present analysis cannot provide support for specific epigenetic modulation of persistent postoperative pain via methylation of two key genes of the glial-opioid interface.
  • Kringel, Dario; Kaunisto, Mari A.; Kalso, Eija; Lötsch, Jörn (2019)
    Cancer and its surgical treatment are among the most important triggering events for persistent pain, but additional factors need to be present for the clinical manifestation, such as variants in pain-relevant genes. In a cohort of 140 women undergoing breast cancer surgery, assigned based on a 3-year follow-up to either a persistent or nonpersistent pain phenotype, next-generation sequencing was performed for 77 genes selected for known functional involvement in persistent pain. Applying machine-learning and item categorization techniques, 21 variants in 13 different genes were found to be relevant to the assignment of a patient to either the persistent pain or the nonpersistent pain phenotype group. In descending order of importance for correct group assignment, the relevant genes comprised DRD1, FAAH, GCH1, GPR132, OPRM1, DRD3, RELN, GABRA5, NF1, COMT, TRPA1, ABHD6, and DRD4, of which one in the DRD4 gene was a novel discovery. Particularly relevant variants were found in the DRD1 and GPR132 genes, or in a cis-eCTL position of the OPRM1 gene. Supervised machine-learning-based classifiers, trained with 2/3 of the data, identified the correct pain phenotype group in the remaining 1/3 of the patients at accuracies and areas under the receiver operator characteristic curves of 65% to 72%. When using conservative classical statistical approaches, none of the variants passed α-corrected testing. The present data analysis approach, using machine learning and training artificial intelligences, provided biologically plausible results and outperformed classical approaches to genotype-phenotype association.