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Papers of the Week

Papers: 9 Mar 2024 - 15 Mar 2024

2024 Mar 14

Mol Pain


Mechanical and Chemical Itch Regulated by Neuropeptide Y-Y1 Signaling.


Chen S, Chen J, Tang D, Yin W, Xu S, Gao P, Jiao Y, Yu W


Itch is a somatosensory sensation to remove potential harmful stimulation with a scratching desire, which could be divided into mechanical and chemical itch according to diverse stimuli, such as wool fiber and insect biting. It has been reported that neuropeptide Y (NPY) neurons, a population of spinal inhibitory interneurons, could gate the transmission of mechanical itch, with no effect on chemical itch. In our study, we verified that chemogenetic activation of NPY neurons could inhibit the mechanical itch as well as the chemical itch, which also attenuated the alloknesis phenomenon in the chronic dry skin model. Afterwards, intrathecal administration of NPY1R agonist, [Leu31, Pro34]-NPY (LP-NPY), showed the similar inhibition effect on mechanical itch, chemical itch and alloknesis as chemo-activation of NPY neurons. Whereas, intrathecal administration of NPY1R antagonist BIBO 3304 enhanced mechanical itch and reversed the alloknesis phenomenon inhibited by LP-NPY treatment. Moreover, selectively knocking down NPY1R by intrathecal injection of Npy1r siRNA enhanced mechanical and chemical itch behavior as well. These results indicate that NPY neurons in spinal cord regulate mechanical and chemical itch, and alloknesis in dry skin model through NPY1 receptors.