Neuron Glia Biology

Research Article

Can satellite glial cells be therapeutic targets for pain control?

Luc Jasmina1a2 c1, Jean-Philippe Vita3, Aditi Bhargavaa4 and Peter T. Oharaa1

a1 Department of Anatomy, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA

a2 Department of Neurosurgery, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA, USA

a3 Department of Psychiatry, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA, USA

a4 Department of Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA

Abstract

Satellite glial cells (SGCs) undergo phenotypic changes and divide the following injury into a peripheral nerve. Nerve injury, also elicits an immune response and several antigen-presenting cells are found in close proximity to SGCs. Silencing SCG-specific molecules involved in intercellular transport (Connexin 43) or glutamate recycling (glutamine synthase) can dramatically alter nociceptive responses of normal and nerve-injured rats. Transducing SGCs with glutamic acid decarboxylase can produce analgesia in models of trigeminal pain. Taken together these data suggest that SGCs may play a role in the genesis or maintenance of pain and open a range of new possibilities for curing neuropathic pain.

Correspondence:

c1 Correspondence should be addressed to: Luc Jasmin, Department of Anatomy, University of California, San Francisco, 513 Parnassus Avenue San Francisco, CA 94143-0452, USA phone: (415) 476-3761 fax: (415) 476-4845 email: ljasmin@gmail.com