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Papers of the Week

Papers: 2 Mar 2019 - 8 Mar 2019

Animal Studies, Pharmacology/Drug Development

2019 May 15



The roles of chemokine CXCL13 in the development of bone cancer pain and the regulation of morphine analgesia in rats.


Bu H-L, Xia Y-Z, Liu P-M, Guo H-M, Yuan C, Fan X-C, Huang C, Wen Y-Y, Kong C-L, Wang T, Ma L-T, Li X-X, Zhang H-W, Zhang L-R, Ma M-Y, Ai Y-Q, Zhang W
Neuroscience. 2019 May 15; 406:62-72.
PMID: 30826523.


Chemokines are important regulators of immune, inflammatory, and neuronal responses in peripheral and central pain pathway. The aim of this study was to investigate whether chemokine (C-X-C motif) ligand 13 (CXCL13) and its receptor (C-X-C chemokine receptor type 5, CXCR5) involve in the development of bone cancer pain (BCP) and the regulation of morphine analgesia in rats. The change of pain behaviors in BCP rats were measured by testing paw withdrawal threshold (PWT). The levels of CXCL13, CXCR5 and signal pathway proteins (p-p38, p-ERK and p-AKT etc) in the spinal cord were measured via western blots. The expression of CXCL13 and CXCR5 in spinal cord were increased in BCP rats. The BCP rats showed decrease of PWTs, which was relieved by CXCR5i. Intrathecally injection of murine recombinant CXCL13 (mrCXCL13) decreased the PWTs of BCP rats and opposed morphine-induced analgesia in BCP rats. In BCP rats, the signal pathway proteins (p38, ERK and AKT) in the spinal cord were activated. CXCL13 and morphine had contrary effect on the phosphorylation of these proteins. MrCXCL13 directly increased the levels of p-p38, p-ERK and p-AKT in BCP rats. However, morphine decreased the levels of these proteins in BCP rats. While blocking the activation of p-p38, p-ERK and p-AKT, morphine analgesia was enhanced. These results suggest CXCL13 participated in bone cancer pain and opposed morphine analgesia via p38, ERK and AKT pathways. It may be a target to enhance pain management in cancer pain patients.