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Papers of the Week

Papers: 10 Jul 2021 - 16 Jul 2021

Human Studies

2021 Jul 09

Eur J Pain

Disruption to normal excitatory and inhibitory function within the medial prefrontal cortex in people with chronic pain.


Kang D, Hesam-Shariati N, McAuley JH, Alam M, Trost Z, Rae CD, Gustin SM
Eur J Pain. 2021 Jul 09.
PMID: 34242465.


Growing evidence indicates a link between changes in the medial prefrontal cortex and the pathophysiology of chronic pain. In particular, chronic pain is associated with altered medial prefrontal anatomy and biochemistry. Due to the comorbid affective disorders seen across all pain conditions, the medial prefrontal cortex is a region of significance as it is involved in emotional processing. We have recently reported that a decrease in medial prefrontal N-acetylaspartate and glutamate is associated with increased emotional dysregulation, indicating there are neurotransmitter imbalances in chronic pain. Therefore, we compared medial prefrontal neurochemistry in 24 people with chronic pain conditions to 24 age and sex matched healthy controls with no history of chronic pain.