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Papers of the Week

Papers: 19 Sep 2020 - 25 Sep 2020

Animal Studies

2020 Sep 17

Sci Rep



Nociceptive mechanisms driving pain in a post-traumatic osteoarthritis mouse model.


Alves CJ, Couto M, Sousa DM, Magalhães A, Neto E, Leitão L, Conceição F, Monteiro AC, Ribeiro-da-Silva M, Lamghari M
Sci Rep. 2020 Sep 17; 10(1):15271.
PMID: 32943744.


In osteoarthritis (OA), pain is the dominant clinical symptom, yet the therapeutic approaches remain inadequate. The knowledge of the nociceptive mechanisms in OA, which will allow to develop effective therapies for OA pain, is of utmost need. In this study, we investigated the nociceptive mechanisms involved in post-traumatic OA pain, using the destabilization of the medial meniscus (DMM) mouse model. Our results revealed the development of peripheral pain sensitization, reflected by augmented mechanical allodynia. Along with the development of pain behaviour, we observed an increase in the expression of calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) in both the sensory nerve fibers of the periosteum and the dorsal root ganglia. Interestingly, we also observed that other nociceptive mechanisms commonly described in non-traumatic OA phenotypes, such as infiltration of the synovium by immune cells, neuropathic mechanisms and also central sensitization were not present. Overall, our results suggest that CGRP in the sensory nervous system is underlying the peripheral sensitization observed after traumatic knee injury in the DMM model, highlighting the CGRP as a putative therapeutic target to treat pain in post-traumatic OA. Moreover, our findings suggest that the nociceptive mechanisms involved in driving pain in post-traumatic OA are considerably different from those in non-traumatic OA.