Forebrain medial septum sustains experimental neuropathic pain
The present study explored the role of the medial septal region (MS) in experimental neuropathic pain. For the first time, we found that the MS sustains nociceptive behaviors in rodent models of neuropathic pain, especially in the chronic constriction injury (CCI) model and the paclitaxel model of chemotherapy-induced neuropathic pain. For example, inactivation of the MS with intraseptal muscimol (2 μg/μl, 0.5 μl), a GABA mimetic, reversed peripheral hypersensitivity (PH) in the CCI model and induced place preference in a conditioned place preference task, a surrogate measure of spontaneous nociception. The effect of intraseptal muscimol on PH was comparable to that seen with microinjection of the local anesthetic, lidocaine, into rostral ventromedial medulla which is implicated in facilitating experimental chronic nociception. Cellular analysis in the CCI model showed that the MS region sustains nociceptive gain with CCI by facilitating basal nociceptive processing and the amplification of stimulus-evoked neural processing. Indeed, consistent with the idea that excitatory transmission through MS facilitates chronic experimental pain, intraseptal microinjection of antagonists acting at AMPA and NMDA glutamate receptors attenuated CCI-induced PH. We propose that the MS is a central monitor of bodily nociception which sustains molecular plasticity triggered by persistent noxious insult.
Journal/Conference/Book titleScientific Reports