Supraspinal modulation of neuronal synchronization by nociceptive stimulation induces an enduring reorganization of dorsal horn neuronal connectivity
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Despite a profusion of information on the molecular and cellular mechanisms involved in the central sensitization produced by intense nociceptive stimulation, the changes in the patterns of functional connectivity between spinal neurones associated with the development of secondary hyperalgesia and allodynia remain largely unknown. Here we show that the state of central sensitization produced by the intradermal injection of capsaicin is associated with structured transformations in neuronal synchronization that lead to an enduring reorganization of the functional connectivity within a segmentally distributed ensemble of dorsal horn neurones. These changes are transiently reversed by the systemic administration of small doses of lidocaine, a clinically effective procedure to treat neuropathic pain. Lidocaine also reduces the capsaicin-induced facilitation of the spinal responses evoked by weak mechanical stimulation of the skin in the region of secondary but not primary hyperalgesia. The effects of both intradermic capsaicin and systemic lidocaine on the segmental correlation and coherence between ongoing cord dorsum potentials and on the responses evoked by tactile stimulation in the region of secondary hyperalgesia are greatly attenuated in spinalized preparations, showing that supraspinal influences are involved in the reorganization of the nociceptive-induced structured patterns of dorsal horn neuronal connectivity. We conclude that the structured reorganization of the functional connectivity between the dorsal horn neurones induced by capsaicin nociceptive stimulation results from cooperative interactions between supraspinal and spinal networks, a process that may have a relevant role in the shaping of the spinal state in the pathogenesis of chronic pain and analgesia.
CitationContreras-Hernández, E., Chávez , D., Hernández, E., Béjar, J., Martin, M., Cortés, U. [et al.]. Supraspinal modulation of neuronal synchronization by nociceptive stimulation induces an enduring reorganization of dorsal horn neuronal connectivity. "Journal of physiology-London", 1 Maig 2018, vol. 596, núm. 9, p. 1747-1776.