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Papers of the Week

Papers: 8 Jan 2022 - 14 Jan 2022

Animal Studies, Human Studies, Pharmacology/Drug Development


Oxid Med Cell Longev


CGRP Regulates Nucleus Pulposus Cell Apoptosis and Inflammation via the MAPK/NF-B Signaling Pathways during Intervertebral Disc Degeneration.


Sun K, Zhu J, Yan C, Li F, Kong F, Sun J, Sun X, Shi J, Wang Y
Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2021; 2021:2958584.
PMID: 34987701.


Chronic low back pain (CLBP) has been proved to be the dominating cause of disability in patients with lumbar degenerative diseases. Of the various etiological factors, intervertebral disc degeneration (IVDD) has been the dominating cause. In the past few decades, the role and changes of nerve systems, especially the peripheral sensory fibers and their neurotransmitters, in the induction and progression of IVDD have attracted growing concerns. The expression of many neuropeptides, such as SP, NPY, and CGRP, in the nociceptive pathways is increased during the progression of IVDD and responsible for the discogenic pain. Here, the role of CGRP in the progression of IVDD was firstly investigated both in vitro and in vivo. Firstly, we confirmed that human degenerated intervertebral disc tissue exhibited elevated expression of CGRP and its receptor. Secondly, in vitro experiments suggested that CGRP could inhibit the proliferation and induce apoptosis in human nucleus pulposus (NP) cells, as well as promote inflammation and degenerated phenotypes through activating NF-B and MAPK signaling pathways. Thirdly, CGRP receptor antagonist, Rimegepant, can ameliorate the adverse effects of CGRP imposed on NP cells, which were confirmed in vitro and in vivo. Our results will bring about a brand-new insight into the roles of neuromodulation in IVDD and related therapeutic attempts.