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Papers of the Week

Papers: 4 Nov 2023 - 10 Nov 2023

2023 Dec

Pain Rep




The role of micro-RNAs in neuropathic pain-a scoping review.


Kovanur Sampath K, Belcher S, Hales J, Thomson OP, Farrell G, Gisselman AS, Katare R, Tumilty S


Neuropathic pain can be caused by a lesion or disease of the somatosensory system characterised by pathological neuro-immune alterations. At a molecular level, microRNAs (miRNAs) act as regulators of gene expression orchestrating both immune and neuronal processes. Thus, miRNAs may act as essential modulators of processes for the establishment and maintenance of neuropathic pain. The objective/aims of this scoping review was to explore and chart the literature to identify miRNAs that are dysregulated in neuropathic pain. The following databases were searched from inception to March 2023: PubMed, EBSCO, CINAHL, Cochrane Library, and SCOPUS. Two independent reviewers screened, extracted data, and independently assessed the risk of bias in included studies. The JBI critical appraisal checklist was used for critical appraisal. A narrative synthesis was used to summarise the evidence. Seven studies (total of 384 participants) that met our eligibility criteria were included in this scoping review. Our review has identified different miRNAs that are commonly involved in the chronic neuropathic pain conditions including miR-132, miR-101, and miR-199a. Our review findings further suggest that expression of miRNAs to be significantly associated with increased diabetic disease duration, HbA1C levels, and fibrinogen levels. Our review findings suggest that there is clear association between miRNA expression and chronic neuropathic pain conditions. Therefore, increasing the specificity by selecting a candidate miRNA and identifying its target mRNA is an area of future research.