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Papers of the Week

Papers: 15 Aug 2020 - 21 Aug 2020

Animal Studies

2020 Aug 13


Sciatic nerve ligation downregulates mitochondrial clusterin in the rat prefrontal cortex.


Rodríguez-Rivera C, Girón R, Sánchez-Robles E, González-Martín C, Goicoechea C, Alguacil LF
Neuroscience. 2020 Aug 13.
PMID: 32798589.


The concentration of the multifunctional protein clusterin is reduced in the plasma of subjects with degenerative scoliosis and carpal tunnel syndrome but elevated in the cerebrospinal fluid of neuropathic pain patients successfully treated with spinal cord stimulation. The present work tries to increase the knowledge of pain-associated changes of plasma and brain clusterin by using an animal model of neuropathy. We studied the effects of sciatic nerve ligation on mechanical allodynia (von Frey test), anxiety (elevated plus maze test), plasma clusterin (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) and clusterin expression in the nucleus accumbens and prefrontal cortex of adult male Wistar rats (western blot). The possible modulatory role of high fat dieting was also studied, bearing in mind that obesity has been also reported to influence nociception, clusterin levels and prefrontal cortex activation. Animals with nerve ligation showed mechanical allodynia, anxiety and a marked downregulation of clusterin in the mitochondrial fraction of the prefrontal cortex. Animals fed on high fat also exhibited a slight increase of the sensitivity to mechanical stimuli and anxiety; however, the diet did not potentiate the effects of nerve ligation. The results did not confirm a parallelism between neuropathy, obesity and alterations of plasma levels of clusterin, but strongly suggest that the protein could be involved in the functional reorganization of the prefrontal cortex which has been recently reported in chronic pain conditions.