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Brain Res. 1999 Nov 27;848(1-2):191-6.

Neuropeptide FF and modulation of pain.

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Department of Biology, Abo Akademi University, Biocity, Tykistokatu 6A, 20520, Turku, Finland.


Neuropeptide FF (NPFF) and the related longer peptide neuropeptide AF (NPAF) derive from a single gene in several mammalian species. The gene product is expressed mainly in the CNS, where the posterior pituitary and dorsal spinal cord contain the highest concentrations. Evidence from biochemical and immunohistochemical studies combined with in situ hybridization using NPFF gene-specific probes suggest that all NPFF-like peptides may not derive from the characterized NPFF gene, but that other genes can exist which give rise to related peptides. Intraventricular NPFF exerts antiopioid effects, but intrathecal NPFF potentiates the analgesic effects of morphine. NPFF mRNA expression is upregulated in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord after carrageenan-induced inflammation in the hind paw of the rat, but not in the neuropathic pain model induced by ligation of the spinal roots. NPFF produces a submodality-selective potentiation of the antinociceptive effect induced by brain stem stimulation in the spinal cord during inflammation, and this effect is independent of naloxone-sensitive opioid receptors. In neuropathic animals, NPFF injected into the periaqueductal grey produces a significant attenuation of tactile allodynia, which is not modulated by naloxone. NPFF thus modulates pain sensation and morphine analgesia under normal and pathological conditions through both spinal and brain mechanisms.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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