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Papers of the Week

Papers: 16 Jul 2022 - 22 Jul 2022

Pharmacology/Drug Development

2022 Jul 17

Mol Biol Rep

Multifactorial pathways in burn injury-induced chronic pain: novel targets and their pharmacological modulation.


Burn injuries are among the highly prevalent medical conditions worldwide that occur mainly in children, military veterans and victims of fire accidents. It is one of the leading causes of temporary as well as permanent disabilities in patients. Burn injuries are accompanied by pain that persists even after recovery from tissue damage which puts immense pressure on the healthcare system. The pathophysiology of burn pain is poorly understood due to its complex nature and lack of considerable preclinical and clinical shreds of evidence, that creates a substantial barrier to the development of new analgesics. Burns damage the skin layers supplied with nociceptors such as NAV1.7, TRPV1, and TRPA1. Burn injury-mediated co-localization and simultaneous activation of TRPA1 and TRPV1 in nociceptive primary afferent C-fibers which contributes to the development and maintenance of chronic pain. Burn injuries are accompanied by central sensitization, a key feature of pain pathophysiology mainly driven by a series of cascades involving aberrations in the glutamatergic system, microglial activation, release of neuropeptides, cytokines, and chemokines. Activation of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase, altered endogenous opioid signaling, and distorted genomic expression are other pathophysiological factors responsible for the development and maintenance of burn pain. Here we discuss comprehensive literature on molecular mechanisms of burn pain and potential targets that could be translated into near future therapeutics.