I am a
Home I AM A Search Login

Papers of the Week

Papers: 8 May 2021 - 14 May 2021


Pain Rep



Angiotensin receptors and neuropathic pain.


Balogh M, Aguilar C, Nguyen NT, Shepherd AJ
Pain Rep. 2021; 6(1):e869.
PMID: 33981922.


Growing evidence implicates the renin-angiotensin system (RAS) in multiple facets of neuropathic pain (NP). This narrative review focuses primarily on the major bioactive RAS peptide, Angiotensin II (Ang II), and its receptors, namely type 1 (AT1R) and type 2 (AT2R). Both receptors are involved in the development of NP and represent potential therapeutic targets. We first discuss the potential role of Ang II receptors in modulation of NP in the central nervous system. Ang II receptor expression is widespread in circuits associated with the perception and modulation of pain, but more studies are required to fully characterize receptor distribution, downstream signaling, and therapeutic potential of targeting the central nervous system RAS in NP. We then describe the peripheral neuronal and nonneuronal distribution of the RAS, and its contribution to NP. Other RAS modulators (such as Ang (1-7)) are briefly reviewed as well. AT1R antagonists are analgesic across different pain models, including NP. Several studies show neuronal protection and outgrowth downstream of AT2R activation, which may lead to the use of AT2R agonists in NP. However, blockade of AT2R results in analgesia. Furthermore, expression of the RAS in the immune system and a growing appreciation of neuroimmune crosstalk in NP add another layer of complexity and therapeutic potential of targeting this pathway. A growing number of human studies also hint at the analgesic potential of targeting Ang II signaling. Altogether, Ang II receptor signaling represents a promising, far-reaching, and novel strategy to treat NP.