Neuropathic Pain Killer

Science's STKE  10 Oct 2000:
Vol. 2000, Issue 53, pp. tw10
DOI: 10.1126/stke.2000.53.tw10

Peripheral nerve damage can lead to neuropathic pain, which is intense, persistent, and difficult to treat with presently available drugs. Boucher et al. present evidence that GDNF, but not other neurotrophic factors, can prevent the development of neuropathic pain and could also help revert already established neuropathic pain states. The effects of GDNF are caused by a reduction of spontaneous activity in myelinated sensory afferents. The underlying mechanism is a readjustment of voltage-gated sodium channel expression in dorsal root ganglion neurons.

Boucher, T.J., Okuse, K., Bennett, D.L.H., Munson, J.B., Wood, J.N., and McMahon, S.B. (2000) Potent analgesic effects of GDNF in neuropathic pain states. Science 290: 124-127. [Abstract] [Full Text]