Document Detail

Unravelling the mystery of capsaicin: a tool to understand and treat pain.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  23023032     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
A large number of pharmacological studies have used capsaicin as a tool to activate many physiological systems, with an emphasis on pain research but also including functions such as the cardiovascular system, the respiratory system, and the urinary tract. Understanding the actions of capsaicin led to the discovery its receptor, transient receptor potential (TRP) vanilloid subfamily member 1 (TRPV1), part of the superfamily of TRP receptors, sensing external events. This receptor is found on key fine sensory afferents, and so the use of capsaicin to selectively activate pain afferents has been exploited in animal studies, human psychophysics, and imaging studies. Its effects depend on the dose and route of administration and may include sensitization, desensitization, withdrawal of afferent nerve terminals, or even overt death of afferent fibers. The ability of capsaicin to generate central hypersensitivity has been valuable in understanding the consequences and mechanisms behind enhanced central processing of pain. In addition, capsaicin has been used as a therapeutic agent when applied topically, and antagonists of the TRPV1 receptor have been developed. Overall, the numerous uses for capsaicin are clear; hence, the rationale of this review is to bring together and discuss the different types of studies that exploit these actions to shed light upon capsaicin working both as a tool to understand pain but also as a treatment for chronic pain. This review will discuss the various actions of capsaicin and how it lends itself to these different purposes.
Jessica O'Neill; Christina Brock; Anne Estrup Olesen; Trine Andresen; Matias Nilsson; Anthony H Dickenson
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Review    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Pharmacological reviews     Volume:  64     ISSN:  1521-0081     ISO Abbreviation:  Pharmacol. Rev.     Publication Date:  2012 Oct 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-10-01     Completed Date:  2013-02-21     Revised Date:  2013-07-11    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0421737     Medline TA:  Pharmacol Rev     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  939-71     Citation Subset:  IM    
Neuroscience, Physiology and Pharmacology, University College London, London.
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MeSH Terms
Capsaicin / administration & dosage*,  pharmacokinetics
Gastrointestinal Tract / metabolism
Models, Biological
Pain / chemically induced,  drug therapy,  physiopathology*
Respiratory System / metabolism
Skin / metabolism
Transient Receptor Potential Channels / physiology
Grant Support
//Wellcome Trust
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Transient Receptor Potential Channels; 404-86-4/Capsaicin

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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