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Papers of the Week

Papers: 30 Mar 2024 - 5 April 2024

2024 Mar 29

Biochem Pharmacol


Neuroinflammation in osteoarthritis: From pain to mood disorders.


Amodeo G, Magni G, Galimberti G, Riboldi B, Franchi S, Sacerdote P, Ceruti S


Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common form of musculoskeletal disease, and its prevalence is increasing due to the aging of the population. Chronic pain is the most burdensome symptom of OA that significantly lowers patients’ quality of life, also due to its frequent association with emotional comorbidities, such as anxiety and depression. In recent years, both chronic pain and mood alterations have been linked to the development of neuroinflammation in the peripheral nervous system, spinal cord and supraspinal brain areas. Thus, mechanisms at the basis of the development of the neuroinflammatory process may indicate promising targets for novel treatment for pain and affective comorbidities that accompany OA. In order to assess the key role of neuroinflammation in the maintenance of chronic pain and its potential involvement in development of psychiatric components, the monoiodoacetate (MIA) model of OA in rodents has been used and validated. In the present commentary article, we aim to summarize up-to-date results achieved in this experimental model of OA, focusing on glia activation and cytokine production in the sciatic nerve, dorsal root ganglia (DRGs), spinal cord and brain areas. The association of a neuroinflammatory state with the development of pain and anxiety- and depression-like behaviors are discussed. Results suggest that cells and molecules involved in neuroinflammation may represent novel targets for innovative pharmacological treatments of OA pain and mood comorbidities.