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Nat Neurosci. 2009 May;12(5):544-6. doi: 10.1038/nn.2292. Epub 2009 Apr 6.

Relief of itch by scratching: state-dependent inhibition of primate spinothalamic tract neurons.

Author information

1
University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, USA.

Abstract

Itch is relieved by scratching, but the neural mechanisms that are responsible for this are unknown. Spinothalamic tract (STT) neurons respond to itch-producing agents and transmit pruritic information to the brain. We observed that scratching the cutaneous receptive field of primate STT neurons produced inhibition during histamine-evoked activity but not during spontaneous activity or activity evoked by a painful stimulus, suggesting that scratching inhibits the transmission of itch in the spinal cord in a state-dependent manner.

PMID:
19349977
PMCID:
PMC3006451
DOI:
10.1038/nn.2292
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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