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Papers: 15 Jun 2024 - 21 Jun 2024

2024 May 31

Int J Mol Sci




Dynamics of Cellular Regulation of Fractalkine/CX3CL1 and Its Receptor CX3CR1 in the Rat Trigeminal Subnucleus Caudalis after Unilateral Infraorbital Nerve Lesion-Extended Cellular Signaling of the CX3CL1/CX3CR1 Axis in the Development of Trigeminal Neuropathic Pain.


Kubíčková L, Dubový P


The cellular distribution and changes in CX3CL1/fractalkine and its receptor CX3CR1 protein levels in the trigeminal subnucleus caudalis (TSC) of rats with unilateral infraorbital nerve ligation (IONL) were investigated on postoperation days 1, 3, 7, and 14 (POD1, POD3, POD7, and POD14, respectively) and compared with those of sham-operated and naïve controls. Behavioral tests revealed a significant increase in tactile hypersensitivity bilaterally in the vibrissal pads of both sham- and IONL-operated animals from POD1 to POD7, with a trend towards normalization in sham controls at POD14. Image analysis revealed increased CX3CL1 immunofluorescence (IF) intensities bilaterally in the TSC neurons of both sham- and IONL-operated rats at all survival periods. Reactive astrocytes in the ipsilateral TSC also displayed CX3CL1-IF from POD3 to POD14. At POD1 and POD3, microglial cells showed high levels of CX3CR1-IF, which decreased by POD7 and POD14. Conversely, CX3CR1 was increased in TSC neurons and reactive astrocytes at POD7 and POD14, which coincided with high levels of CX3CL1-IF and ADAM17-IF. This indicates that CX3CL1/CX3CR1 may be involved in reciprocal signaling between TSC neurons and reactive astrocytes. The level of CatS-IF in microglial cells suggests that soluble CX3CL1 may be involved in neuron-microglial cell signaling at POD3 and POD7, while ADAM17 allows this release at all studied time points. These results indicate an extended CX3CL1/CX3CR1 signaling axis and its role in the crosstalk between TSC neurons and glial cells during the development of trigeminal neuropathic pain.