Friday, September 23rd
The Role of Adipocytes in Chronic Pain and Inflammation
The origin of chronic overlapping pain conditions (COPCs), such as temporomandibular disorder and fibromyalgia, is linked to enhanced catecholaminergic tone. In earlier work, we provided the first demonstration that catecholamines promote chronic multi-site pain through activation of adrenergic receptor beta-3 (Adrb3). Here, new data will be presented in a clinically-relevant mouse model of COPCs that reveal Adrb3 mediates chronic multi-site pain through its location on peripheral adipocytes (fat cells). Activation of adipocyte Adrb3 leads to stimulation of pro-inflammatory cytokines and enhanced activity of primary afferent nociceptors. The resulting pain is then maintained by neuroplastic changes in the central nervous system that are characterized by increased production of pro-inflammatory cytokines, phosphorylation of mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs), and increased activation of glia and nociceptors.