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Papers of the Week

Papers: 25 Apr 2020 - 1 May 2020

2020 May

Trends Neurosci



Editor's Pick

Getting in Touch with Mechanical Pain Mechanisms.


Hill RZ, Bautista DM
Trends Neurosci. 2020 May; 43(5):311-325.
PMID: 32353335.


The peripheral somatosensory system bestows mammals with a diverse repertoire of sensory modalities: gentle touch, mechanical pain, itch, thermosensation, and proprioception. The cells and molecules that transduce many of these stimuli have already been characterized. But how somatosensory neurons transduce acutely painful mechanical forces is largely unknown and remains one of the 'final frontiers' of sensory neurobiology. In an effort to fill this gap in knowledge, recent studies have identified subpopulations of mechanical pain neurons and uncovered novel modulators of mechanical pain. These studies have greatly advanced our understanding of how noxious mechanical stimuli are detected in mammals. Here, we discuss recent progress in noxious mechanosensation and highlight new behavioral methods to assess mechanical pain.