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Cerebral processing of itch-scratching cycles was studied with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in healthy volunteers. The back of the hand was repetitively scratched in the absence and presence of itch induced by histamine applied close to the scratched site. Blood-oxygenation-level-dependent (BOLD) effects were assessed in predefined cortical(More)
Lightly touching normal skin near a site of itch can elicit itch sensation, a phenomenon known as alloknesis. To investigate the neural mechanisms of alloknesis, we have developed an animal model. Low-threshold mechanical stimulation of the skin normally does not elicit any response in naive C57/BL6 mice. Following acute intradermal (i.d.) injection of(More)
We examined whether neuronal proteinase-activated receptor-2 (PAR-2) may be involved in pruritus of human skin. The endogenous PAR-2 agonist tryptase was increased up to fourfold in atopic dermatitis (AD) patients. PAR-2 was markedly enhanced on primary afferent nerve fibers in skin biopsies of AD patients. Intracutaneous injection of endogenous PAR-2(More)
We compared itch sensations and axon reflex flare induced by transcutaneous electrical (0.08-8 ms, 2-200 Hz) and chemical (histamine iontophoresis; 100 microC) stimulation. Stimuli were applied to non-lesional volar wrist skin in 20 healthy human subjects and 10 patients with atopic dermatitis. Intensity of evoked itch and pain sensations were rated on a(More)
The neurobiology of itch, which is formally known as pruritus, and its interaction with pain have been illustrated by the complexity of specific mediators, itch-related neuronal pathways and the central processing of itch. Scratch-induced pain can abolish itch, and analgesic opioids can generate itch, which indicates an antagonistic interaction. However,(More)
Targets for antipruritic therapies are now expanding from the skin to the central nervous system. Recent studies demonstrate that various neuronal receptors in the spinal cord are involved in pruritus. The spinal opioid receptor is one of the best-known examples. Spinal administration of morphine is frequently accompanied by segmental pruritus. In addition(More)
Histamine, substance P, serotonin and bradykinin were applied by iontophoresis to lesional and visually non-lesional skin of 14 patients with atopic dermatitis, and normal skin of 15 healthy volunteers. Itch could be evoked by light stroking of skin with a cotton swab (alloknesis) in all lesional skin sites, but not in non-lesional or normal skin.(More)
Itch has been described for many years as an unpleasant sensation that evokes the urgent desire to scratch. Studies of the neurobiology, neurophysiology, and cellular biology of itch have gradually been clarifying the mechanism of itch both peripherally and centrally. The discussion has been focused on which nerves and neuroreceptors play major roles in(More)
Several thermosensitive transient receptor potential channels (transient receptor potential vanilloid type-1, -3; transient receptor potential cation channel, subfamily A, member 1) have been implicated in itch. In contrast, the role of transient receptor potential vanilloid type-4 (TRPV4) in itch is unknown. Therefore, we investigated if TRPV4, a(More)
Chronic itch is a common and distressing symptom that arises from a variety of skin conditions and systemic diseases. Despite this, there is no clinically based classification of pruritic diseases to assist in the diagnosis and cost-effective medical care of patients with pruritus. The proposed classification focuses on clinical signs and distinguishes(More)