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Relief of pain is rewarding. Using a model of experimental postsurgical pain we show that blockade of afferent input from the injury with local anesthetic elicits conditioned place preference, activates ventral tegmental dopaminergic cells, and increases dopamine release in the nucleus accumbens. Importantly, place preference is associated with increased(More)
Injuries can induce adaptations in pain processing that result in amplification of signaling. One mechanism may be analogous to long-term potentiation and involve the atypical protein kinase C, PKMζ. The possible contribution of PKMζ-dependent and independent amplification mechanisms to experimental neuropathic pain was explored in rats with spinal nerve(More)
Neuropathic pain is often "spontaneous" or "stimulus-independent." Such pain may result from spontaneous discharge in primary afferent nociceptors in injured peripheral nerves. However, whether axotomized primary afferent nociceptors give rise to pain is unclear. The rostral anterior cingulate cortex (rACC) mediates the negative affective component of(More)
Pain is aversive, and its relief elicits reward mediated by dopaminergic signaling in the nucleus accumbens (NAc), a part of the mesolimbic reward motivation pathway. How the reward pathway is engaged by pain-relieving treatments is not known. Endogenous opioid signaling in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), an area encoding pain aversiveness, contributes(More)
Preclinical assessment of pain has increasingly explored operant methods that may allow behavioral assessment of ongoing pain. In animals with incisional injury, peripheral nerve block produces conditioned place preference (CPP) and activates the mesolimbic dopaminergic reward pathway. We hypothesized that activation of this circuit could serve as a(More)
A predominant complaint in patients with neuropathic pain is spontaneous pain, often described as burning. Recent studies have demonstrated that negative reinforcement can be used to unmask spontaneous neuropathic pain, allowing for mechanistic investigations. Here, ascending pathways that might contribute to evoked and spontaneous components of an(More)
Uncoupling the protein-protein interaction between collapsin response mediator protein 2 (CRMP2) and N-type voltage-gated calcium channel (CaV2.2) with an allosteric CRMP2-derived peptide (CBD3) is antinociceptive in rodent models of inflammatory and neuropathic pain. We investigated the efficacy, duration of action, abuse potential, and neurobehavioral(More)
Chronic pain affects the life of millions of people. Current treatments have deleterious side effects. We have advanced a strategy for targeting protein interactions which regulate the N-type voltage-gated calcium (CaV2.2) channel as an alternative to direct channel block. Peptides uncoupling CaV2.2 interactions with the axonal collapsin response mediator(More)
Dynorphin A (Dyn A) is a unique endogenous ligand that possesses well-known neuroinhibitory effects via opioid receptors with a preference for the kappa receptor but also neuroexcitatory effects, which cause hyperalgesia. We have shown that the neuroexcitatory effects are mediated through bradykinin (BK) receptors and that intrathecal (i.th.) administration(More)
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