Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Indiana University neuroscientists map a new target to wipe pain away

06.06.2011
Researchers at the Indiana University School of Medicine have discovered a peptide that short circuits a pathway for chronic pain. Unlike current treatments this peptide does not exhibit deleterious side effects such as reduced motor coordination, memory loss, or depression, according to an article in Nature Medicine posted online June 5, 2011.

The peptide, CBD3, has been shown in mice to interfere with signals that navigate calcium channels to produce pain. Unlike other substances that block pain signals, CBD3 does not directly inhibit the influx of calcium. This is important as influx of calcium regulates heart rhythm and vital functions in other organs.

Rajesh Khanna, Ph.D., assistant professor of pharmacology and toxicology at the Indiana University School of Medicine, said the peptide discovered by him and his colleagues is potentially safer to use than addictive opioids or cone snail toxin Prialt®–a recognized analgesic that is injected into the spinal column, both of which can cause respiratory distress, cardiac irregularities and other problems.

"After opioids–the gold standard for pain control -- the next target is calcium channels," said Dr. Khanna. "Along the pain pathway in the spinal cord, there are pain-sensing neurons called nociceptors that have an abundance of calcium channels."

Earlier international research has shown that the calcium channel is a key player within the pathway for pain signals. Based on work from Dr. Khanna's laboratory, it is also accepted that an axonal protein, CRMP-2, binds to the calcium channel "acting like a remote control" to modulate transmission of excitability and pain signals, Dr. Khanna explained.

He and his colleagues discovered the CBD3 peptide, a portion of the CRMP-2 protein, realizing that its smaller size would be beneficial in producing a synthetic version for drug development.

CBD3 can be given systemically and blocks pain in a variety of acute as well as chronic pain models, he said. The novel peptide binds to the calcium channel and reduces the number of excitability signals without disrupting the beneficial global calcium flow. Upon reaching the brain, these signals are interpreted as the sensation of pain.

"Since our approach does not directly inhibit calcium entry through voltage-gated channels, we expect that this molecule will be more specific and have fewer side effects than currently available analgesics," said Dr. Khanna. "We anticipate that this peptide will serve as a novel pharmacological therapeutic for the relief of chronic pain."

Dr. Khanna is a primary investigator in the Paul and Carole Stark Neurosciences Research Institute and the Indiana Spinal Cord and Brain Injury Research Group. His Stark Neuroscience Institute colleagues involved in the research are first author Joel M. Brittain and second author Sarah M. Wilson, both PhD students in his laboratory, and co-first-author Djane B. Duarte, Ph.D., a post-doctoral fellow. Members of the Harvard University Department of Anesthesiology also assisted with the research.

Funding for the research was provided in part by a American Heart Association National Scientist Development Grant, the Ralph W. and Grace M. Showalter Research Trust Fund and the Indiana Genomics Initiative.

Mary L. Hardin | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.iupui.edu

Further reports about: CBD3 CRMP-2 Medicine Neuroscience calcium channel chronic pain

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht New High-Performance Center Translational Medical Engineering
26.04.2017 | Fraunhofer ITEM

nachricht A promising target for kidney fibrosis
21.04.2017 | Brigham and Women's Hospital

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Scientist invents way to trigger artificial photosynthesis to clean air

26.04.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ammonium nitrogen input increases the synthesis of anticarcinogenic compounds in broccoli

26.04.2017 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

SwRI-led team discovers lull in Mars' giant impact history

26.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>