I am a
Home I AM A Search Login

Papers of the Week

Papers: 25 Apr 2020 - 1 May 2020

Animal Studies, Pharmacology/Drug Development

2020 Apr 23

J Pharmacol Exp Ther

Topical delivery of muscarinic receptor antagonists prevents and reverses peripheral neuropathy in female diabetic mice.


Jolivalt CG, Frizzi KE, Han M M, Mota AJ, Guernsey LS, Kotra LP, Fernyhough P, Calcutt NA
J Pharmacol Exp Ther. 2020 Apr 23.
PMID: 32327528.


Muscarinic antagonists promote sensory neurite outgrowth in vitro and prevent and/or reverse multiple indices of peripheral neuropathy in rodent models of diabetes, chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy and HIV protein-induced neuropathy when delivered systemically. We measured plasma concentrations of the M1 receptor selective muscarinic antagonist pirenzepine when delivered by sub-cutaneous injection, oral gavage or topical application to the skin and investigated efficacy of topically delivered pirenzepine against indices of peripheral neuropathy in diabetic mice. Topical application of 2% pirenzepine to the paw resulted in plasma concentrations 6hr post-delivery that approximated those previously shown to promote neurite outgrowth in vitro. Topical delivery of pirenzepine to the paw of streptozotocin-diabetic mice dose-dependently (0.1-10.0%) prevented tactile allodynia, thermal hypoalgesia and loss of epidermal nerve fibers in the treated paw and attenuated large fiber motor nerve conduction slowing in the ipsilateral limb. Efficacy against some indices of neuropathy was also noted in the contralateral limb, indicating systemic effects following local treatment. Topical pirenzepine also reversed established paw heat hypoalgesia while withdrawal of treatment resulted in a gradual decline in efficacy over 2-4 weeks. Efficacy of topical pirenzepine was muted when treatment was reduced from 5 to 3 or 1 days per week. Similar local effects were noted with the non-selective muscarinic receptor antagonist atropine when applied either to the paw or to the eye. Topical delivery of muscarinic antagonists may serve as a practical therapeutic approach to treating diabetic and other peripheral neuropathies. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT: Muscarinic antagonist pirenzepine alleviates diabetic peripheral neuropathy when applied topically in mice.