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Papers: 27 Apr 2024 - 3 May 2024

2024 Apr 19

Int J Mol Sci




MIF-Modulated Spinal Proteins Associated with Persistent Bladder Pain: A Proteomics Study.


Ye S, Agalave NM, Ma F, Mahmood DFD, Al-Grety A, Khoonsari PE, Leng L, Svensson CI, Bucala R, Kultima K, Vera PL


Bladder pain is a prominent symptom in Interstitial Cystitis/Bladder Pain Syndrome (IC/BPS). We studied spinal mechanisms of bladder pain in mice using a model where repeated activation of intravesical Protease Activated Receptor-4 (PAR4) results in persistent bladder hyperalgesia (BHA) with little or no bladder inflammation. Persistent BHA is mediated by spinal macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF), and is associated with changes in lumbosacral proteomics. We investigated the contribution of individual spinal MIF receptors to persistent bladder pain as well as the spinal proteomics changes associated with relief of persistent BHA by spinal MIF antagonism. Female mice with persistent BHA received either intrathecal (i.t.) MIF monoclonal antibodies (mAb) or mouse IgG1 (isotype control antibody). MIF antagonism temporarily reversed persistent BHA (peak effect: 2 h), while control IgG1 had no effect. Moreover, i.t. antagonism of the MIF receptors CD74 and C-X-C chemokine receptor type 4 (CXCR4) partially reversed persistent BHA. For proteomics experiments, four separate groups of mice received either repeated intravesical scrambled peptide and sham i.t. injection (control, no pain group) or repeated intravesical PAR4 and: sham i.t.; isotype IgG1 i.t. (15 μg); or MIF mAb (15 μg). L6-S1 spinal segments were excised 2 h post-injection and examined for proteomics changes using LC-MS/MS. Unbiased proteomics analysis identified and relatively quantified 6739 proteins. We selected proteins that showed significant changes compared to control (no pain group) after intravesical PAR4 (sham or IgG i.t. treatment) and showed no significant change after i.t. MIF antagonism. Six proteins decreased during persistent BHA (V-set transmembrane domain-containing protein 2-like confirmed by immunohistochemistry), while two proteins increased. Spinal MIF antagonism reversed protein changes. Therefore, spinal MIF and MIF receptors mediate persistent BHA and changes in specific spinal proteins. These novel MIF-modulated spinal proteins represent possible new targets to disrupt spinal mechanisms that mediate persistent bladder pain.