[3H] pregabalin binding is increased in ipsilateral dorsal horn following chronic constriction injury

Heather L. Melrose, Ross A. Kinloch, Peter J. Cox, Mark J. Field, David Collins, Dic Williams

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20 Scopus citations


Pregabalin, a 3-substituted analogue of gamma-amino butyric acid has recently been approved for treatment of neuropathic pain. We have investigated the anatomical binding profile of [3H] pregabalin following chronic constriction injury (CCI) and compared this with α2δ1 subunit expression using in situ hybridisation. We report here that the intensity and distribution pattern of [3H] pregabalin binding is altered in the ipsilateral dorsal horn following CCI and this is associated with a corresponding increase in α2δ1 mRNA in the ipsilateral dorsal root ganglion (DRG). It is likely that increased DRG mRNA production leads to increased α2δ1 protein production and subsequent transport by primary afferents to the dorsal horn. The increased expression of calcium channel subunits and protein in central terminals is interesting, given that abnormal activity within sensory nerves is likely to significantly contribute to the symptomatology of neuropathic pain. The upregulation of pregabalin binding sites in sensory nerve terminals may occur as part of the response to nerve damage in neuropathic pain patients, and therefore, preferential actions of pregabalin at these sites may contribute to its mechanism of action in man.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)187-192
Number of pages6
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 1 2007


  • Autoradiography
  • In situ hybridisation
  • Neuropathic pain
  • α2δ1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience


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