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Papers of the Week

Papers: 11 May 2024 - 17 May 2024

2024 May 13

Neurosci Bull


Thalamic Nucleus Reuniens Glutamatergic Neurons Mediate Colorectal Visceral Pain in Mice via 5-HT Receptors.


Li D, Du H, Qu ST, Wu JL, Li YC, Xu QY, Chen X, Dai XX, Xu JT, Wang Q, Xu GY


Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a common functional bowel disorder characterized by abdominal pain and visceral hypersensitivity. Reducing visceral hypersensitivity is the key to effectively relieving abdominal pain in IBS. Increasing evidence has confirmed that the thalamic nucleus reuniens (Re) and 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) neurotransmitter system play an important role in the development of colorectal visceral pain, whereas the exact mechanisms remain largely unclear. In this study, we found that high expression of the 5-HT receptors in the Re glutamatergic neurons promoted colorectal visceral pain. Specifically, we found that neonatal maternal deprivation (NMD) mice exhibited visceral hyperalgesia and enhanced spontaneous synaptic transmission in the Re brain region. Colorectal distension (CRD) stimulation induced a large amount of c-Fos expression in the Re brain region of NMD mice, predominantly in glutamatergic neurons. Furthermore, optogenetic manipulation of glutamatergic neuronal activity in the Re altered colorectal visceral pain responses in CON and NMD mice. In addition, we demonstrated that 5-HT receptor expression on the Re glutamatergic neurons was upregulated and ultimately promoted colorectal visceral pain in NMD mice. These findings suggest a critical role of the 5HT receptors on the Re glutamatergic neurons in the regulation of colorectal visceral pain.