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Oral application of magnesium-L-threonate alleviates radicular pain by inhibiting neuro-inflammation dependent central sensitization of rats.

Brain Research 2024 April 10
BACKGROUND: We have reported neuro-inflammation is involved in radicular pain by enhancing the efficiency of pain synaptic transmission in spinal level. Recently, peers' studies have confirmed that magnesium deficiency leads to neuro-inflammation, thus contributes to memory and emotional deficits and pain hypersensitivity in antineoplastic agents treated rats. In this study, we explore the effect of oral application of magnesium-L-threonate (L-TAMS) in radicular pain induced by lumbar disc herniation (LDH) of rats and the possible mechanisms.

METHODS: Rat model of LDH was induced by autologous nucleus pulposus (NP) implantation. Mechanical and thermal pain thresholds were assessed by von Frey filaments and hotplate test respectively. L-TAMS was applied from drinking water at dosage of 604 mg/kg/day from 2 day before NP implantation and until the end of the experiment. Free Mg2+ content in serum and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) was measured by calmagite chromometry. Synaptic transmission efficiency was determined by C-fiber evoked field potentials recorded by electrophysiologic recording in vivo. The activation of microglia in spinal dorsal horn was displayed by immunofluorescence staining and western blotting. The expressions of pro-inflammatory cytokines and glutamic N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) subunits (NR2A, NR2B) were assessed by western blotting and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) respectively.

RESULTS: NP implantation induced mechanical allodynia and thermal hyperalgesia, accompanied by decreased Mg2+ concentration in serum and CSF which were both obscured by oral application of L-TAMS. L-TAMS inhibited spinal microglia activation and pro-inflammatory cytokines (TNF-α, IL-6, IL-1β) expression of rats with NP. L-TAMS decreased C-fiber evoked potentials and NR2B protein level in rats with NP, which were rescued by extra intrathecal delivery of TNF-α or IL-6 or IL-1β.

CONCLUSIONS: Oral application of L-TAMS alleviates radicular pain by inhibiting neuro-inflammation dependent central sensitization of rats.

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