Navigation Links
Short circuit in molecular switch intensifies pain
Date:1/14/2014

While searching for novel painkillers, researchers at KU Leuven in Belgium came to the surprising conclusion that some candidate drugs actually increase pain. In a study published in the journal Nature Chemical Biology, the researchers show that a molecular switch in the nerves responsible for detecting pain can 'short-circuit', thus aggravating the onset of pain.

Pain functions as an important alarm signal. It alerts us to potential bodily harm a hot or sharp object, for example and motivates us to withdraw from damaging situations. At the cellular level, pain involves the stimulation of a network of pain nerves spread through the skin, mucosa and bodily organs.

Embedded in the cell wall surrounding these nerves are ion channels. These tiny, microscopic pathways respond to stimuli such as extreme cold or heat, mechanical pressure or harmful chemicals. When ion channels open, an electrical signal is created, transmitted to the brain, and interpreted as pain.

In previous research, the team of KU Leuven researchers led by Professor Thomas Voets (Laboratory of Ion Channel Research) and Professor Joris Vriens (Laboratory of Obstetrics and Experimental Gynaecology) discovered that a particular ion channel TRPM3 acts as a molecular fire detector: the ion channel detects heat and the hormone pregnenolone sulfate, a precursor to the sex hormones estrogen and testosterone and a trigger for pain and inflammation. In the present study, the researchers were looking for TRPM3 inhibitors that could potentially be used as painkillers.

Surprisingly, their results show that a number of drugs meant as painkillers actually increased pain in mice tested in the study, says Professor Voets: "Normally, when the ion channel is closed, no electrical signal is sent to the brain and therefore no pain is detected. But we found that pain can indeed occur despite a closed ion channel. How? A short-circuit in the ion channel. When short-circuiting occurs, the electrical signal effected by a stimulus does not follow the normal pathway through the central pore of the ion channel. Instead, it navigates an alternative path through the surrounding material. This 'electric leak' activates the pain nerves, thus increasing the sensation of pain. This may explain the pain-enhancing side effects of some drugs such as clotrimazole, a common remedy for yeast infections that often causes unpleasant side effects such as irritation and burning sensations.

"It is striking that short-circuits in the ion channel only occur at high hormone levels. This could explain why some patients experience these side effects while others do not," says Professor Voets. The researchers hope this new knowledge about TRPM3-dependent pain will contribute to the development of new painkillers with fewer painful side effects.


'/>"/>

Contact: Thomas Voets
thomas.voets@med.kuleuven.be
32-163-30217
KU Leuven
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Introducing a New Sand Wedge that Is Perfect for Taking Strokes off the Short Game, Courtesy of Black Magic’s Innovative Golf Wedge
2. Black Magic’s Advanced Engineering With Golf Equipment for the Short Game Offers a Top of the Line Gap Wedge That Can Have You Shooting Lower Scores in No Time
3. New Collection Of Short Wedding Dresses Available At FannyBrides.com
4. Tacfit Warrior Helps People Get A Lean And Strong Body In The Shortest Time Possible – Vinamy
5. Stocking Stuffer Ideas from Sublime Beauty® Including a Short Jazzy Video; Find Great Gifts and Benefit From Holiday Sales
6. Fashionable Short Bridesmaid Dresses At ForeverDresses.com
7. Scientists discover that short-term energy deficits increase factors related to muscle degradation
8. Shortage of rheumatologists -- In some US regions closest doctor may be 200 miles away
9. Age affects short-term quality of life after breast biopsy
10. Physician shortage could be cut by new primary care models, study finds
11. UCSF researchers offer solutions to looming health-care provider shortage
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... ... ‘17, and Jennifer Huggins, PharmD ’17, along with clinical associate professor Janice ... of cardiovascular diseases during the 15th Annual Women’s Health Conference. The SIU ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... NY (PRWEB) , ... October 13, 2017 , ... Ellevate ... people in business to advocate for action towards gender equality at their inaugural Summit ... from around the globe, and reached a social audience of over 3 million. To ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... ... “The Journey: From the Mountains to the Mission Field”: the story of ... Philippines. “The Journey: From the Mountains to the Mission Field” is the creation of ... taught all ages and currently teaches a class of ladies at her church, which ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... the demand of today’s consumer and regulatory authorities worldwide. From Children’s to Adults ... tested to meet the highest standard. , These products are also: Gluten ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... Dr. Parsa Mohebi, the Los ... article to the newly revamped Cosmetic Town journal section, featuring articles ... procedure known as Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE). , Dr. Mohebi says ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/19/2017)... medical device company developing a non-invasive, robotically assisted, platform therapy that uses pulsed sound energy ... ... Jim Bertolina, PhD ... Tom Tefft ... executive Josh Stopek , PhD, who has led R&D and business development teams at ...
(Date:9/18/2017)... ALLENTOWN , Pa. and KALAMAZOO, Mich. ... Allentown, Penn. , and OptiMed Specialty Pharmacy ... a business partnership to offer a strategic hub service ... PMD Healthcare,s highly sought-after personal spirometer, Spiro PD 2.0, ... A spirometer is a medical device used ...
(Date:9/13/2017)... has been named the official orthopedic and sports medicine ... 2018 College Football Playoff (CFP) National Championship to be played ... Atlanta, Georgia . OrthoAtlanta is proud to be ... many activities leading up to, and including the national championship ... OrthoAtlanta serves ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: