alexa Angiotensin II produces nociceptive behavior through spinal AT1 receptor-mediated p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase activation in mice.
Anesthesiology

Anesthesiology

Journal of Anesthesia & Clinical Research

Author(s): Nemoto W, Nakagawasai O, Yaoita F, Kanno S, Yomogida S

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BACKGROUND: It has been demonstrated that angiotensin II (Ang II) participates in either the inhibition or the facilitation of nociceptive transmission depending on the brain area. Neuronal Ang II is locally synthesized not only in the brain, but also in the spinal cord. Though the spinal cord is an important area for the modulation of nociception, the role of spinal Ang II in nociceptive transmission remains unclear. Therefore, in order to elucidate the role of Ang II in nociceptive transmission in the spinal cord, we examined the effect of intrathecal (i.t.) administration of Ang II into mice. RESULTS: I.t. administration of Ang II produced a behavioral response in mice mainly consisting of biting and/or licking of the hindpaw and the tail along with slight hindlimb scratching directed toward the flank. The behavior induced by Ang II (3 pmol) was dose-dependently inhibited by intraperitoneal injection of morphine (0.1-0.3 mg/kg), suggesting that the behavioral response is related to nociception. The nociceptive behavior was also inhibited dose-dependently by i.t. co-administration of losartan (0.3-3 nmol), an Ang II type 1 (AT1) receptor antagonist, and SB203580 (0.1-1 nmol), a p38 MAPK inhibitor. However, the Ang II type 2 (AT2) receptor antagonist PD123319, the upstream inhibitor of ERK1/2 phosphorylation U0126, and the JNK inhibitor SP600125 had no effect on Ang II-induced nociceptive behavior. Western blot analysis showed that the i.t. injection of Ang II induced phosphorylation of p38 MAPK in the lumbar dorsal spinal cord, which was inhibited by losartan, without affecting ERK1/2 and JNK. Furthermore, we found that AT1 receptor expression was relatively high in the lumbar superficial dorsal horn. CONCLUSIONS: Our data show that i.t. administration of Ang II induces nociceptive behavior accompanied by the activation of p38 MAPK signaling mediated through AT1 receptors. This observation indicates that Ang II may act as a neurotransmitter and/or neuromodulator in the spinal transmission of nociceptive information.

This article was published in Mol Pain and referenced in Journal of Anesthesia & Clinical Research

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