Examination of neuronal arborization in the lumbar dorsal root entry as a prospective mechanism of burn pain chronification




Hunter, Michael Paul
Olaoluwa, Temiloluwa P.
Hynds, DiAnna L.
Averitt, Dayna L.

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Burn victims experience severe pain that can transition to chronic pain. Chronic burn pain development may involve neural plasticity (reorganization of neural processes) of the sensory neurons entering the spinal cord. We hypothesized that thermal injury increases arborization of axonal sensory processes to promote persistent pain. Rats received one thermal injury (1% total body surface area) to the plantar surface of the hindpaw and pain behaviors were quantified at 24-, 48-, 72-hours, 1-, and 2-weeks postinjury. Dorsal root ganglia (collection of sensory neuron cell bodies outside the spinal cord) and lumbar spinal cords were extracted. Immunohistochemistry and western blotting were utilized to identify changes in markers of pain signaling, including calcitonin gene-related peptide, substance P, and c-Fos. To identify sprouting axons, we are labeling nerve growth factor, beta III tubulin, and growth associated protein 43. Arborization may represent an alternative target to manage chronic pain development in burn patients.

Presented at the 2021 Student Creative Arts and Research Symposium


Creative Arts and Research Symposium
Creative Arts and Research Symposium