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J Urol. 2006 Aug;176(2):797-801.

Transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor subtype 1 in painful bladder syndrome and its correlation with pain.

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  • 1Peripheral Neuropathy Unit, Hammersmith Hospital and Imperial College London, UK.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

Painful bladder syndrome is a chronic, debilitating bladder hypersensitivity disorder characterized by urinary frequency, urgency and bladder pain without an identifiable cause. Recent advances in understanding the molecular basis of hypersensitivity provide an opportunity to advance the understanding of and treatment for painful bladder syndrome. We studied the heat and capsaicin receptor transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor subtype 1 in the bladder in patients with painful bladder syndrome and their relationship to pain symptoms.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

Bladder biopsies were obtained from 20 characterized subjects with painful bladder syndrome and 25 with asymptomatic microscopic hematuria as controls. Specimens were immunostained using specific antibodies to transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor subtype 1 and neurofilaments as a structural maker. Nerve fiber and urothelial staining were quantified with computerized image analysis. The results of immunohistochemistry were correlated with the pain score.

RESULTS:

There was a marked increase in suburothelial nerve fibers expressing transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor subtype 1 in painful bladder syndrome in comparison with that in controls (p <0.0001). The ratio of transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor subtype 1 fibers to neurofilaments was also significantly increased in painful bladder syndrome, suggesting over expression of transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor subtype 1 (p <0.0001). When all specimens studied were included, the pain score correlated significantly with the relative nerve fiber density of transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor subtype 1 in the suburothelium (r = 0.6862, p = 0.0002) as well as the ratio of transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor subtype 1 fibers to neurofilaments (r = 0.5554, p = 0.004). Urothelial transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor subtype 1 showed a tendency toward an increase in the painful bladder syndrome group but it did not achieve statistical significance. No correlation was found between transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor subtype 1 immunoreactivity of urothelium or neurofilament fibers and the pain score.

CONCLUSIONS:

This study shows increased transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor subtype 1 in nerve fibers of the bladder in painful bladder syndrome and a correlation of the pain score with the relative density of transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor subtype 1 nerve fibers. Transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor subtype 1 may have a role in the pathophysiology of painful bladder syndrome and it is a potential target for novel therapeutic agents.

PMID:
16813950
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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