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Curr Opin Investig Drugs. 2005 Jan;6(1):48-57.

Transient receptor potential ion channels as targets for the discovery of pain therapeutics.

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Department of Biochemistry, Neurogen Corporation, Branford, CT 06405, USA.


A subset of transient receptor potential (TRP) channels exhibits activity that is highly sensitive to temperature changes and is expressed in sensory tissues, such as nociceptors and skin. Some of these thermosensitive TRP channels, such as TRPV1, TRPV4 and TRPA1, are activated or sensitized by molecules generated by inflammation and/or cell damage. TRPV1, also known as the capsaicin receptor, is particularly important in mediating hyperalgesic responses in inflammatory pain states, as demonstrated by research in knockout animals and with small-molecule antagonists. It is anticipated that TRPV1 antagonists, and perhaps antagonists at other thermosensitive TRP channels, will provide new therapeutic options with which to treat clinical pain.

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