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Papers of the Week

Papers: 27 Jan 2024 - 2 Feb 2024

2024 Jan 25

Int Immunopharmacol



Blocking brown adipocyte β-adrenoceptor attenuates blood-spinal cord barrier impairment and chronic postsurgical pain in a rat model of preoperative stress.


Zhu J, Hou B, Rong H, Xu K, Jiang L, Yang S, Zhu H, Yang H, Jiao Y, Liu Y, Ni K, Ma Z


Preoperative stress has been recognized as an independent risk factor for chronic postsurgical pain (CPSP). However, the underlying mechanisms of CPSP influenced by preoperative stress remain elusive. Previous studies indicated that excessive stress could induce disruption of the blood-spinal cord barrier (BSCB). We wondered whether and how BSCB involves in CPSP by using a single prolonged stress (SPS) combining plantar incision model in male rats to mimic preoperative stress-related postsurgical pain. Here, we observed that preoperative SPS-exposed rats exhibited relentless incisional pain, which was accompanied by impairment of BSCB and persistent elevation of serum IL-6. Intraperitoneal injections of Tocilizumab (an IL-6 receptor monoclonal antibody) not only mitigated BSCB breakdown but also alleviated pain behaviors. In addition, intervening β-adrenoceptor (ADRB3) signaling in brown adipocytes by SR59230a (a specific ADRB3 antagonist) treatment or removal of brown adipose tissues could effectively decrease serum IL-6 levels, ameliorate BSCB disruption, and alleviate incisional pain. Further results displayed that SI-exposed rats also showed markedly spinal microglia activation. And exogenous His-tagged IL-6 could pass through the disrupted BSCB, which might contribute to microglia activation. Injection of SR59230a or ablation of brown adipose tissues could effectively reduce the activation of spinal microglia. Thus, our findings suggest that serum IL-6 induced by brown adipocyte ADRB3 signaling contributed to BSCB disruption and spinal microglia activation, which might be involved in preoperative stress mediated CPSP. This work indicates a promising treatment strategy for preoperative stress induced CPSP by blocking ADRB3.