Effect of gabapentin in a neuropathic pain model in mice overexpressing human wild-type or human mutated torsin a

Damiana Scuteri, Laura Rombolà, Silvia Natoli, Antonio Pisani, Paola Bonsi, Chizuko Watanabe, Giacinto Bagetta, Paolo Tonin, Maria Tiziana Corasaniti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: DYT1 dystonia is the most common form of early-onset inherited dystonia, which is caused by mutation of torsin A (TA) belonging to the “ATPases associated with a variety of cellular activities” (AAA + ATPase). Dystonia is often accompanied by pain, and neuropathic pain can be associated to peripherally induced movement disorder and dystonia. However, no evidence exists on the effect of gabapentin in mice subjected to neuropathic pain model overexpressing human normal or mutated TA. Methods: Mice subjected to L5 spinal nerve ligation (SNL) develop mechanical allodynia and upregulation of the α2δ-1 L-type calcium channel subunit, forming a validated experimental model of neuropathic pain. Under these experimental conditions, TA is expressed in dorsal horn neurons and astrocytes and colocalizes with α2δ-1. Similar to this subunit, TA is overex-pressed in dorsal horn 7 days after SNL. This model has been used to investigate (1) basal mechanical sensitivity; (2) neuropathic pain phases; and (3) the effect of gabapentin, an α2δ-1 ligand used against neuropathic pain, in non-transgenic (NT) C57BL/6 mice and in mice overexpressing human wild-type (hWT) or mutant (hMT) TA. Results: In comparison to non-transgenic mice, the threshold for mechanical sensitivity in hWT or hMT does not differ (Kruskal–Wallis test = 1.478; p = 0.4777, although, in the latter animals, neuropathic pain recovery phase is delayed. Interestingly, gabapentin (100 mg/Kg) reduces allodynia at its peak (occurring between post-operative day 7 and day 10) but not in the phase of recovery. Conclusions: These data lend support to the investigation on the role of TA in the molecular machinery engaged during neuropathic pain.

Original languageEnglish
Article number41
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2021


  • DYT1
  • Gabapentin
  • Neuropathic pain
  • Snl
  • Torsin A
  • Transgenic mice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Palaeontology


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