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Anesthesiology. 2008 Nov;109(5):879-89. doi: 10.1097/ALN.0b013e3181895a83.

Intrathecal injection of the sigma(1) receptor antagonist BD1047 blocks both mechanical allodynia and increases in spinal NR1 expression during the induction phase of rodent neuropathic pain.

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  • 1College of Veterinary Medicine and BK21 Program for Veterinary Science, Seoul National University, Seoul, Republic of Korea.



Selective blockade of spinal sigma(1) receptors (Sig-1R) suppresses nociceptive behaviors in the mouse formalin test. The current study was designed to verify whether intrathecal Sig-1R antagonists can also suppress chronic neuropathic pain.


Neuropathic pain was produced by chronic constriction injury (CCI) of the right sciatic nerve in rats. The Sig-1R antagonist BD1047 was administered intrathecally twice daily from postoperative days 0 to 5 (induction phase of neuropathic pain) or from days 15 to 20 (maintenance phase). Western blot and immunohistochemistry were performed to determine changes in Sig-1R expression and to examine the effect of BD1047 on N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor subunit 1 expression and phosphorylation in spinal cord dorsal horn from neuropathic rats.


BD1047 administered on postoperative days 0-5 significantly attenuated CCI-induced mechanical allodynia, but not thermal hyperalgesia, and this suppression was blocked by intrathecal administration of the Sig-1R agonist PRE084. In contrast, BD1047 treatment during the maintenance phase of neuropathic pain had no effect on mechanical allodynia. Sig-1R expression significantly increased in the ipsilateral spinal cord dorsal horn from days 1 to 3 after CCI. Importantly, BD1047 (30 nmol) administered intrathecally during the induction, but not the maintenance phase, blocked the CCI-induced increase in N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor subunit 1 expression and phosphorylation.


These results demonstrate that spinal Sig-1Rs play a critical role in both the induction of mechanical allodynia and the activation of spinal N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors in CCI rats and suggest a potential therapeutic role for the use of Sig-1R antagonists in the clinical management of neuropathic pain.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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