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Papers of the Week

Papers: 30 Mar 2019 - 5 Apr 2019

Animal Studies, Pharmacology/Drug Development

2019 Jul

Clin Exp Pharmacol Physiol



Nitric Oxide Modulates μ-Opioid (MOP) Receptor Function In Vitro.


Huang L, Wyse BD, Williams CM, Smith MT
Clin Exp Pharmacol Physiol. 2019 Jul; 46(7):676-685.
PMID: 30933370.


Painful diabetic neuropathy (PDN) is a type of peripheral neuropathic pain that develops as a consequence of prolonged hyperglycaemia-induced injury to the long nerves. Apart from pain, PDN is also characterized by morphine hyposensitivity. Intriguingly, in streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic rats exhibiting marked morphine hyposensitivity, dietary administration of the nitric oxide (NO) precursor, L-arginine at 1g/day, progressively rescued morphine efficacy and potency over an 8-week treatment period. In earlier work, single bolus doses of the furoxan nitric oxide (NO) donor, PRG150 (3-methylfuroxan-4-carbaldehyde), evoked dose-dependent pain relief in STZ-diabetic rats but the efficacious doses were 3-4 orders of magnitude higher in advanced diabetes than that required in early STZ-diabetes. Together, these findings suggested a role for NO in the modulation of μ-opioid (MOP) receptor signalling. Therefore, the present study was designed to assess a role for NO released from PRG150, in modulating MOP receptor function in vitro. Here, we show an absolute requirement for the MOP receptor, but not the δ-opioid (DOP) or the κ-opioid (KOP) receptor, to transduce the cellular effects of PRG150 on forskolin-stimulated cAMP responses in vitro. PRG150 did not interact with the classical naloxone-sensitive binding site of the MOP receptor and its effects on cAMP responses in HEK-MOP cells were also naloxone-insensitive. Nevertheless, the inhibitory effects of PRG150 on forskolin-stimulated cAMP responses in HEK-MOP cells were dependent upon pertussis toxin (PTX)-sensitive G proteins as well as membrane lipid rafts and src kinase. Together, our findings implicate a role for NO in modulating MOP receptor function in vivo. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.