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Papers of the Week

Papers: 10 Jun 2023 - 16 Jun 2023


Animal Studies, Neurobiology, Neuromodulation

Arthritis, Inflammation/Inflammatory

2023 Jun 07

Neurosci Lett


Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation Attenuates Chronic Pain in Knee Osteoarthritis by Modulating BDNF/TrkB Signaling in the Descending Pain Modulation System.


Ye Y, Yan X, Wang L, Xu J, Li T


Knee osteoarthritis (KOA) is the most common cause of chronic pain, but its pain mechanisms are complex and may be closely related to the descending pain modulation system. Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is used for relieving pain, but its analgesic mechanisms are still being explored. The purpose of this study was to investigate the role of BDNF/TrkB signaling in chronic pain in KOA and to investigate whether this signaling is related to the analgesic effect of tDCS. Rats were injected with monosodium iodoacetate (MIA) into the left knee joint to establish a chronic pain model and then received 20 min of tDCS for 8 days. Rats were respectively administered the TrkB inhibitor ANA-12 after MIA modeling and exogenous BDNF after tDCS treatment. Behaviors testing was assessed by hot plate and von Frey using the up-down method. In addition, the expression levels of BDNF and TrkB on the periaqueductal gray (PAG)-the rostral ventromedial medulla (RVM)-the spinal dorsal horn (SDH) axis were detected by Western blot and Immunohistochemistry staining. Behavioral results show that tDCS treatment and ANA-12 injection reversed MIA-induced allodynia while reducing BDNF and TrkB expression levels. Furthermore, injection of exogenous BDNF reversed the therapeutic effect of tDCS on pain. These results indicate that upregulation of the BDNF/TrkB signaling in the descending pain modulation system may play an important role in KOA-induced chronic pain in rats, and tDCS may reduce KOA-induced chronic pain by inhibiting the BDNF/TrkB signaling in the descending pain modulation system.