Venlafaxine Attenuates Heat Hyperalgesia Independent of Adenosine or Opioid System in a Rat Model of Peripheral Neuropathy

Document Type: Research article

Authors

1 Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran

2 Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology and Pharmaceutical research center, School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical sciences, Isfahan University of Medical sciences, Isfahan, Iran

3 Department of Addiction studies, School of Medicine, Kashan University of Medical Sciences, Kashan. Iran.

4 1Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology and Pharmaceutical research center, School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical sciences, Isfahan University of Medical sciences, Isfahan, Iran

5 Physiology Research Center, Kashan University of Medical Sciences, Kashan. Iran.

Abstract

Primarily opioidergic and adenosine mechanisms are considered to be involved in the antinociceptive effects of antidepressants. This study was designed to determine the efficacy of acute venlafaxine administration in alleviating symptoms of neuropathic pain and the role of endogenous adenosine and opioid systems in this effect of venlafaxine. We have evaluated the effect of caffeine, a non-selective adenosine A1 and A2 receptor antagonist and naloxone as an antagonist of opioid receptors on the antinociceptive effects of venlafaxine. Chronic constriction injury of the sciatic nerve resulted in thermal hyperalgesia, mechanical and cold allodynia in the rats. Animals were received on the 7th day after surgery, when the model had been fully established, venlafaxine (20 and 40 mg/kg i.p.), or venlafaxine (40 mg/kg) in combination with caffeine (5 mg/kg i.p.) or naloxone (1 mg/kg s.c.). Rats were tested for thermal reaction latencies, mechanical and cold allodynia 45 min after drug injection. Acute venlafaxine (40 mg/kg i.p.) administration consistently decreased the thermal hyperalgesia and this effect was not blocked by concomitant caffeine or naloxone administration. There was no effect by either drug or the drug combination on the tactile and cold allodynia. The results of this study indicate that venlafaxine (40 mg/kg i.p.) is effective in alleviating thermal hyperalgesia and this effect is independent through manipulation of adenosine or opioid system. This observation demonstrates that venlafaxine, which is a mixed inhibitor of norepinephrine and serotonin reuptake, differs from the other antidepressants in the mechanism of its antinociception action.

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