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The inability of axons to regenerate after a spinal cord injury in the adult mammalian central nervous system (CNS) can lead to permanent paralysis. At sites of CNS injury, a glial scar develops, containing extracellular matrix molecules including chondroitin sulphate proteoglycans (CSPGs). CSPGs are inhibitory to axon growth in vitro, and regenerating(More)
Many damage-sensing neurons express tetrodotoxin (TTX)-resistant voltage-gated sodium channels. Here we examined the role of the sensory-neuron-specific (SNS) TTX-resistant sodium channel alpha subunit in nociception and pain by constructing sns-null mutant mice. These mice expressed only TTX-sensitive sodium currents on step depolarizations from normal(More)
Homologous recombination was utilized to generate mice with a deletion in the coding sequence of the nerve growth factor (NGF) gene. Animals homozygous for NGF disruption failed to respond to noxious mechanical stimuli, and histological analysis revealed profound cell loss in both sensory and sympathetic ganglia. Within dorsal root ganglia, effects of the(More)
Neuropathic pain arises as a debilitating consequence of nerve injury. The etiology of such pain is poorly understood, and existing treatment is largely ineffective. We demonstrate here that glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) both prevented and reversed sensory abnormalities that developed in neuropathic pain models, without affecting(More)
Embryonic spinal motor neurons are thought to depend for survival on unidentified factors secreted both by their peripheral targets and by cells within the central nervous system. The neurotrophins are a family of polypeptides required for survival of discrete central and peripheral neuronal populations in vivo and in vitro. In spite of their ability to(More)
We have studied the distribution and regulation of the P2X3 receptor (a ligand-gated ion channel activated by ATP) in adult dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons using a polyclonal antibody. P2X3 receptor immunoreactivity was normally present in about 35% of L4/5 DRG neurons, virtually all small in diameter. In the dorsal horn, P2X3 receptor expression was(More)
Sensory axons in the adult spinal cord do not regenerate after injury. This is essentially because of inhibitory components in the damaged CNS, such as myelin-associated inhibitors and the glial scar. However, if the sciatic nerve is axotomized before injury of the dorsal column, injured axons can regenerate a short distance in the spinal cord. Here, we(More)
Changes in sodium channel activity and neuronal hyperexcitability contribute to neuropathic pain, a major clinical problem. There is strong evidence that the re-expression of the embryonic voltage-gated sodium channel subunit Nav1.3 underlies neuronal hyperexcitability and neuropathic pain. Here we show that acute and inflammatory pain behaviour is(More)
The tetrodotoxin-resistant voltage-gated sodium channel Nav 1.8 is expressed only in nociceptive sensory neurons. This channel has been proposed to contribute significantly to the sensitization of primary sensory neurons after injury. We have studied the nociceptive behaviours of mice carrying a null mutation in the Nav 1.8 gene (Nav 1.8 -/-) in models of(More)
The arrest of dorsal root axonal regeneration at the transitional zone between the peripheral and central nervous system has been repeatedly described since the early twentieth century. Here we show that, with trophic support to damaged sensory axons, this regenerative barrier is surmountable. In adult rats with injured dorsal roots, treatment with nerve(More)