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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Epidural injection of cyclooxygenase-2 inhibitor attenuates pain-related behavior following application of nucleus pulposus to the nerve root in the rat.

Cyclooxygenase-2 ( COX-2), the inducible isoform of COX, has been identified as the key enzyme to regulate prostaglandin E2 synthesis in inflammatory conditions. Although it has been reported that COX-2 is present in herniated disc samples obtained from patients, little is known concerning the relationships between COX-2 and painful radiculopathy. The purpose of this study was to evaluate whether epidural injection of COX-2 inhibitor abolishes hyperalgesia induced by nucleus pulposus, which is a pain-related behavior in the rat. Rats, in which nucleus pulposus was relocated on the nerve root, exhibited evidence of mechanical hyperalgesia. Epidural injection of COX-2 inhibitor resulted in decrease in mechanical hyperalgesia 1 h, 3 and 7 days after the epidural injection of COX-2 inhibitor (0.1 mg/kg SC-'236 dissolved in the vehicle). There were no significant differences in sensitivity to thermal noxious stimuli after either application of the nucleus pulposus or epidural injections. These results suggest that prostaglandins and thromboxane, which are produced by COX-2 in inflammatory cells, appear to be related to the inflammatory process produced by application of nucleus pulposus to the nerve root. It is possible that COX-2 plays a significant role in painful radiculopathy following herniated nucleus pulposus.[1]


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