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Papers of the Week

Papers: 12 Mar 2022 - 18 Mar 2022

Pharmacology/Drug Development

2022 Mar 11

Eur J Pharmacol

Cbl-b modulated TrkA ubiquitination and function in the dorsal root ganglion of mice.


Chen H-K, Li Y-Z, Ge A-N, Zhu Y-B, Wu S-J, Bai X, Bai H-H, Liu Y-N
Eur J Pharmacol. 2022 Mar 11:174876.
PMID: 35288194.


Casitas B-lineage lymphoma b (Cbl-b) is one of the E3 ubiquitin ligases that ubiquitinate Tropomyosin-related kinase A (TrkA), a key nerve growth factor receptor involved in the pathological pain. Here we found that Cbl-b was abundant in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons of mice and co-localized with TrkA. Ubiquitination of TrkA by Cbl-b exerted a tonic negative control over the protein level of TrkA. Knockdown of Cbl-b caused TrkA accumulation in DRGs and evoked mechanical and heat hypersensitivity in intact mice. Our data showed that knee osteoarthritis induced by destabilization of the medial meniscus (DMM) led to the dissociation of Cbl-b with TrkA in DRG neurons, which impaired the ability of Cbl-b to ubiquitinate TrkA and served as an important mechanism to cause TrkA-dependent pain sensitization. Viral expression of constitutively active Cbl-b in DRGs of osteoarthritic mice effectively repressed TrkA protein level and more importantly, alleviated mechanical allodynia and heat hyperalgesia. Viral delivery of Cbl-b through intra-articular route generated a similar analgesic action. These data suggested that ubiquitination of TrkA by Cbl-b might represent an effective way to treat the osteoarthritic pain.