Neuropathic pain-induced cognitive dysfunction and down-regulation of neuronal pentraxin 2 in the cortex and hippocampus.


Wang R(1)(2), Man Y(2), Zhou M(2), Zhu Y(2), Wang L(2), Yang J(1).
Author information:
(1)Department of Anesthesiology, Intensive Care Medicine and Pain Medicine, First Affiliated Hospital of Soochow University, Suzhou.
(2)Department of Anesthesiology, Xuzhou Central Hospital, Xuzhou, China.


Evidence from both basic and clinical science suggests that neuropathic pain can induce cognitive dysfunction. However, these results are mainly based on a series of behavioral tests, there is a lack of quantitative variables to indicate cognitive impairment. Neuronal activity-regulated pentraxin (NPTX2) is a ubiquitously expressed, secreted protein in the nervous system. NPTX2 has been implicated to be involved in a variety of neuropathic diseases including Parkinson's disease, ischemia, and Alzheimer's disease. In a mouse model of chronic pain, NPTX2 is involved in the regulation of inflammatory responses. Here, we employ a variety of behavioral approaches to demonstrate that mice with chronic neuropathic pain have cognitive impairment and exhibit an increased anxiety response. The expression of NPTX2, but not NPTX1, was down-regulated in the hippocampus and cortex after chronic neuropathic pain exposure. The modulation effect of NPTX2 on cognitive function was also verified by behavioral tests using Nptx2 knock-out mice. Above all, we conclude that downregulation of NPTX2 induced by neuropathic pain may serve as an indicator of a progressive cognitive dysfunction during the induction and maintenance of spared nerve injury.