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Papers of the Week

Papers: 4 May 2024 - 10 May 2024

2024 May 03

Mol Brain




Chronic pain enhances excitability of corticotropin-releasing factor-expressing neurons in the oval part of the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis.


Uchida R, Mukai Y, Amano T, Sakimura K, Itoi K, Yamanaka A, Minami M


We previously reported that enhanced corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) signaling in the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BNST) caused the aversive responses during acute pain and suppressed the brain reward system during chronic pain. However, it remains to be examined whether chronic pain alters the excitability of CRF neurons in the BNST. In this study we investigated the chronic pain-induced changes in excitability of CRF-expressing neurons in the oval part of the BNST (ovBNST neurons) by whole-cell patch-clamp electrophysiology. CRF-Cre; Ai14 mice were used to visualize CRF neurons by tdTomato. Electrophysiological recordings from brain slices prepared from a mouse model of neuropathic pain revealed that rheobase and firing threshold were significantly decreased in the chronic pain group compared with the sham-operated control group. Firing rate of the chronic pain group was higher than that of the control group. These data indicate that chronic pain elevated neuronal excitability of ovBNST neurons.