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:6/25/2016)... Montreal, Canada (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2016 , ... ... the pursuit of success. In terms of the latter, setting the bar too high ... low, risk more than just slow progress toward their goal. , Research from ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Those who have experienced ... feelings, many turn to unhealthy avenues, such as drug or alcohol abuse, as a ... has released tools for healthy coping following a traumatic event. , Trauma sufferers tend ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... a crisis. Her son James, eight, was out of control. Prone to extreme mood shifts ... upset him, he couldn’t control his emotions,” remembers Marcy. “If there was a knife ... and say he was going to kill them. If we were driving on the ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... Global law ... magazine’s 2016 Legal Elite. The attorneys chosen by their peers for this recognition are ... , Seven Greenberg Traurig Shareholders received special honors as members of this year’s Legal ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , ... June 24, 2016 , ... Comfort Keepers® of ... Cancer Society and the Road To Recovery® program to drive cancer patients to and ... other adults to ensure the highest quality of life and ongoing independence. Getting ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016  MedSource announced ... as its e-clinical software solution of choice.  This ... best possible value to their clients by offering ... The preferred relationship establishes nowEDC as the EDC ... for MedSource,s full-service clients.  "nowEDC has long been ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Research and Markets has announced the addition ... Chemical (Sugar, Petrochemical, Glycerin), Inorganic Chemical), Functionality (Filler, Binder, ... Forecast to 2021" report to their offering. ... excipients market is projected to reach USD 8.1 Billion ... forecast period 2016 to 2021. The ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... DUBLIN , June 23, 2016 ... "Global MEMS Devices Medical Market Analysis 2016 - Forecast to ... The report contains up to date financial ... reliable analysis. Assessment of major trends with potential impact on ... dive analysis of market segmentation which comprises of sub markets, ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: