Role of peripheral endothelin receptors in an animal model of complex regional pain syndrome type 1 (CRPS-I)

Magali Millecamps, Andre Laferrire, J. Vaigunda Ragavendran, Laura S. Stone, Terence J. Coderre

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46 Scopus citations


Chronic post-ischemic pain (CPIP) is an animal model of CRPS-I developed using a 3-h ischemia-reperfusion injury of the rodent hind paw. The contribution of local endothelin to nociception has been evaluated in CPIP mice by measuring sustained nociceptive behaviors (SNBs) following intraplantar injection of endothelin-1 or -2 (ET-1, ET-2). The effects of local BQ-123 (ETA-R antagonist), BQ-788 (ETB-R antagonist), IRL-1620 (ETB-R agonist) and naloxone (opioid antagonist) were assessed on ET-induced SNBs and/or mechanical and cold allodynia in CPIP mice. ETA-R and ETB-R expression was assessed using immunohistochemistry and Western blot analysis. Compared to shams, CPIP mice exhibited hypersensitivity to local ET-1 and ET-2. BQ-123 reduced ET-1- and ET-2-induced SNBs in both sham and CPIP animals, but not mechanical or cold allodynia. BQ-788 enhanced ET-1- and ET-2-induced SNBs in both sham and CPIP mice, and cold allodynia in CPIP mice. IRL-1620 displayed a non-opioid anti-nociceptive effect on ET-1- and ET-2-induced SNBs and mechanical allodynia in CPIP mice. The distribution of ETA-R and ETB-R was similar in plantar skin of sham and CPIP mice, but both receptors were over-expressed in plantar muscles of CPIP mice. This study shows that ETA-R and ETB-R have differing roles in nociception for sham and CPIP mice. CPIP mice exhibit more local endothelin-induced SNBs, develop a novel local ETB-R agonist-induced (non-opioid) analgesia, and exhibit over-expression of both receptors in plantar muscles, but not skin. The effectiveness of local ETB-R agonists as anti-allodynic treatments in CPIP mice holds promise for novel therapies in CRPS-I patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)174-183
Number of pages10
Issue number1
StatePublished - Oct 2010
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors wish to thank Dr. Alfredo Ribeiro-da-Silva and Manon Saint-Louis for help with immunohistochemistry, and Dr. Louis-Etiennes Lorenzo and Anna Taylor for their expertise in microscopy. They also wish to thank Jennifer Peleshok for assistance with protein measurement, Dr. Julie Desbarats for loan of equipment, and Dr. Theodore Price and Dr. Gary Bennett for their fruitful discussions. This work was supported by grants from CIHR and the Louise and Alan Edwards Foundation to T.J.C. M.M. was supported by an AstraZeneca/AECRP postdoctoral fellowship.


  • Allodynia
  • Chronic post-ischemia pain
  • Endothelin A receptor
  • Endothelin B receptor
  • Endothelin-1
  • Endothelin-2
  • Ischemia-reperfusion injury
  • Neuropathic pain
  • Reflex sympathetic dystrophy


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