Role of the Glia in Neuropathic Pain Caused by Peripheral Nerve Injury Kazuhide Inoue 1 , Makoto Tsuda 1 , Hidetoshi Tozaki-Saitoh 1 1Department of Molecular and System Pharmacology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Kyushu University Keyword: glia , neuropathic pain , ATP receptors , microglia , astrocyte , allodynia pp.1233-1239
Published Date 2012/11/1
DOI https://doi.org/10.11477/mf.1416101336
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 Neuropathic pain is often a consequence of nerve injury due to surgery, cancer, bone compression, diabetes, or infection. This type of pain can be so severe that even the slightest touch can cause intense pain in the affected area. Neuropathic pain is generally resistant to currently available treatments. Abundant evidence in the literature suggests that activated microglia and astrocytes are key players in neuropathic pain and that ATP receptors expressed in the glia have an important role in pain signaling. In this review, we summarize the roles of the microglia in the functioning of ATP receptors and of the astrocytes in neuropathic pain. Understanding the key functions of the microglia and astrocytes may lead to the development of new strategies for the management of intractable chronic pain.

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