Exogenous erythropoietin protects against dorsal root ganglion apoptosis and pain following peripheral nerve injury

W Marie Campana, Robert R Myers
European Journal of Neuroscience 2003, 18 (6): 1497-506
Erythropoietin (Epo) has been shown to have potent anti-apoptotic activity in central nervous system neurons in animal models of ischaemic injury. Recently, Epo and its receptor (EpoR) have been identified in the peripheral nervous system [Campana & Myers (2001), FASEB J., 15, 1804-1806]. Herein, we demonstrate that in painful neuropathy caused by L5 spinal nerve crush (SNC), therapy with recombinant human Epo (rhEpo) reduced dorsal root ganglion (DRG) apoptosis and pain behaviours. Quantification of both DRG neurons and satellite cells revealed that vehicle-treated, crush-injured DRGs had 35.5 +/- 8.3% apoptotic neurons and 23.5 +/- 2.36% satellite cells compared with 7.5 +/- 6.3% apoptotic neurons and 6.4 +/- 3.94% satellite cells in rhEpo-treated, crush-injured DRGs (P < 0.05). While rhEpo-treated animals were not initially protected from mechanical allodynia associated with L5 SNC, rhEpo did significantly improve recovery rates compared to vehicle-treated animals (P < 0.01). Systemic rhEpo therapy increased JAK2 phosphorylation, a key anti-apoptotic signalling molecule for Epo-induced neuroprotection, in DRGs after crush. Dual immunofluorescence demonstrated Epo-induced JAK2-p was associated with both neuronal and glial cells. JAK2-p was associated with NF200-positive large neurons and with smaller neurons. This population of small neurons did not colocalize with IB4, a marker of nonpeptidergic, glial derived growth factor-responsive neurons. The findings link anti-apoptosis activities of Epo/EpoR/JAK2 in DRG neurons capable of inducing protracted pain states with reductions in pain behaviours, and therefore support a role for Epo therapy in the treatment of neuropathic pain.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Trending Papers

Available on the App Store

Available on the Play Store
Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"