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Papers of the Week

Papers: 18 Jul 2020 - 24 Jul 2020

Animal Studies, Pharmacology/Drug Development

2020 Jul 19

Clin Exp Pharmacol Physiol

Assessment of the anti-hyperalgesic efficacy of J-2156, relative to clinically available analgesic/adjuvant agents in a rat model of mild to moderate chronic mechanical low back pain (LBP).


Chronic mechanical low back pain (cLBP) is a leading cause of disability and a major socio-economic burden internationally. The lifetime prevalence of non-specific LBP is approximately 84%, with the prevalence of cLBP at about 23%. Clinically available analgesic/adjuvant medications often provide inadequate pain relief in patients experiencing cLBP. Hence, the urgency for discovery of effective and better tolerated medications. Fourteen days after the induction of 5 shallow annular punctures (5X) in the lumbar intervertebral discs at L4/L5 and L5/L6 in male Sprague-Dawley rats, mechanical hyperalgesia was fully developed in the lumbar axial deep tissues at L4/L5 (primary) and L1 (secondary). Importantly, mechanical allodynia in the hindpaws was absent. From day 28, we assessed the face validity of our mild to moderate LBP-5X rat model using four clinically available analgesic/adjuvant drugs, namely gabapentin, morphine, meloxicam and amitriptyline relative to vehicle. Additionally, the anti-hyperalgesic effects of J-2156, a highly selective small molecule somatostatin type 4 receptor agonist was assessed. Single i.p. bolus doses of gabapentin and meloxicam at the highest doses tested (100 and 30 mg/kg respectively) alleviated secondary hyperalgesia (L1) but not primary hyperalgesia (L4/5). Morphine at 1 mg/kg alleviated both primary and secondary hyperalgesia in these tissues, whereas amitriptyline at the doses tested, lacked efficacy. These findings attest to the face validity of our model. J-2156 at 10 and 30 mg/kg alleviated secondary hyperalgesia in the lumbar axial deep tissues at L1 with a non-significant trend for relief of primary hyperalgesia in the corresponding tissues at L4/L5 in these animals.