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Papers of the Week

Papers: 26 Aug 2023 - 1 Sep 2023

Basic Science

Animal Studies, Molecular/Cellular, Neurobiology, Pharmacology/Drug Development

Neuropathic Pain

2023 Aug 25

J Chem Neuroanat


Chitosan biomaterial enhances the effect of OECs on the inhibition of sciatic nerve injury-induced neuropathic pain.


Hu JL, Luo HL, Liu JP, Zuo C, Xu YS, Feng X, Zhang WJ


Neuropathic pain is a common symptom experienced by most clinical diseases at different levels, and its treatment has always been a clinical difficulty. Therefore, it is particularly important to explore new and effective treatment methods. The role of olfactory ensheathing cells (OECs) in nerve injury and pain is recognized by different studies. Our previous study found that transplantation of OECs alleviated hyperalgesia in rats. However, single-cell transplantation lacks medium adhesion and support, and exerts limited analgesic effect. Therefore, on the basis of the previous study, this study investigated the effect of pain relief by co-transplanting OECs with chitosan (CS) (a biological tissue engineering material, as OECs were transplanted into the host medium) to the injured sciatic nerve. The results showed that the pain threshold of sciatic nerve injury of rats was significantly reduced, and the expression level of P2X4 receptor in the spinal cord was significantly increased. While olfactory ensheathing cells combined with chitosan (OECs+CS) transplantation could significantly relieve pain, and the analgesic effect was stronger than that of OECs transplantation alone. OECs+CS transplantation promoted the formation of sciatic nerve remyelination, improved the changes of demyelination, and promoted the repair of sciatic nerve injury more significantly. In addition, the effect of OECs+CS to down-regulate the expression of P2X4 receptor was significantly stronger than that of OECs transplantation, and exerted a better analgesic effect. These data reveal that OECs+CS have a better analgesic effect in relieving neuropathic pain induced by sciatic nerve injury, and provide a new therapeutic strategy for pain treatment.