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Papers of the Week

Papers: 13 Jul 2019 - 19 Jul 2019

Animal Studies

2019 Sep

Neurochem Res



N-methyl-D-aspartate Receptors in the Prelimbic Cortex are Critical for the Maintenance of Neuropathic Pain.


Medeiros P, Negrini-Ferrari S E, Palazzo E, Maione S, Ferreira S H, de Freitas R L, Coimbra N C
Neurochem Res. 2019 Sep; 44(9):2068-2080.
PMID: 31317507.


The mechanisms underlying chronic and neuropathic pain pathology involve peripheral and central sensitisation. The medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) seems to participate in pain chronification, and glutamatergic neurotransmission may be involved in this process. Thus, the aim of the present work was to investigate the participation of the prelimbic (PrL) area of the mPFC in neuropathic pain as well as the role of N-methyl D-aspartate (NMDA) glutamate receptors in neuropathic pain induced by a modified sciatic nerve chronic constriction injury (CCI) protocol in Wistar rats. Neural inputs to the PrL cortex were inactivated by intracortical treatment with the synapse blocker cobalt chloride (CoCl, 1.0 mM/200 nL) 7, 14, 21, or 28 days after the CCI or sham procedure. The glutamatergic agonist NMDA (0.25, 1 or 4 nmol) or the selective NMDA receptor antagonist LY235959 (2, 4 or 8 nmol) was microinjected into the PrL cortex 21 days after surgery. CoCl administration in the PrL cortex decreased allodynia 21 and 28 days after CCI. NMDA at 1 and 4 nmol increased allodynia, whereas LY235959 decreased mechanical allodynia at the highest dose (8 nmol) microinjected into the PrL cortex. These findings suggest that NMDA receptors in the PrL cortex participate in enhancing the late phase of mechanical allodynia after NMDA-induced increases and LY235959-induced decreases in allodynia 21 days after CCI. The glutamatergic system potentiates chronic neuropathic pain by NMDA receptor activation in the PrL cortex. Mechanism of neuropathic pain. The infusion of CoCl, a synapse activity blocker, into the prelimbic (PrL) division of the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) decreased the severity of mechanical allodynia, showing the late participation of the limbic cortex. The glutamatergic system potentiates chronic neuropathic pain via NMDA receptor activation in the PrL cortex.