The contribution of the endogenous TRPV1 ligands 9-HODE and 13-HODE to nociceptive processing and their role in peripheral inflammatory pain mechanisms

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The transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 (TRPV1) plays a fundamental role in the detection of heat and inflammatory pain responses. Here we investigated the contribution of two potential endogenous ligands [9- and 13- hydroxyoctadecadienoic acid (HODE)] to TRPV1-mediated noxious responses and inflammatory pain responses.


9- and 13-HODE, and their precursor, linoleic acid, were measured in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons and in the hindpaws of control and carrageenan-inflamed rats by liquid chromatography/tandem electrospray mass spectrometry. Calcium imaging studies of DRG neurons were employed to determine the role of TRPV1 in mediating linoleic acid, 9-HODE- and 13-HODE-evoked responses, and the contribution of 15-lipoxygenase to the generation of the HODEs. Behavioural studies investigated the contribution of 9- and 13-HODE and 15-lipoxygenase to inflammatory pain behaviour.


9-HODE (35 ± 7 pmol g−1) and 13-HODE (32 ± 6 pmol g−1) were detected in hindpaw tissue, but were below the limits of detection in DRGs. Following exposure to linoleic acid, 9- and 13-HODE were detected in DRGs and TRPV1 antagonist-sensitive calcium responses evoked, which were blocked by the 15-lipoxygenase inhibitor PD146176 and an anti-13-HODE antibody. Levels of linoleic acid were significantly increased in the carrageenan-inflamed hindpaw (P < 0.05), whereas levels of 9- and 13-HODE were, however, decreased. Intraplantar co-administration of anti-9- and 13-HODE antibodies and treatment with PD146176 significantly (P < 0.01) attenuated carrageenan-induced hyperalgesia.


This study demonstrates that, although 9- and 13-HODE can activate TRPV1 in DRG cell bodies, the evidence for a role of these lipids as endogenous peripheral TRPV1 ligands in a model of inflammatory pain is at best equivocal.

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