Membrane-associated prostaglandin E synthase-1 is required for neuropathic pain

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It is widely accepted that prostaglandin (PG) E2 is the principal pro-inflammatory prostanoid and plays an important role in inflammatory pain. However whether PGE2 is involved in neuropathic pain remains unknown. PGE2 is produced from arachidonic acid via PGH2 by at least three PGE synthases (PGES), cytosolic PGES (cPGES), and membrane-associated PGES (mPGES)-1 and -2. In the present study, to clarify the involvement of PGE2 and identify PGES mediating neuropathic pain, we applied a neuropathic pain model prepared by L5 spinal nerve transection to mPGES-1 knockout (mPGES-1−/−) mice. Whereas they retained normal nociceptive responses, mPGES-1−/− mice did not exhibit mechanical allodynia and thermal hyperalgesia over a week. These results demonstrate that PGE2 produced by mPGES-1 is involved in neuropathic pain.

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