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Background & Objectives
Headache is a common symptom of post-concussion syndrome which may persist in a substantial portion of patients contributing to a poor quality of life and disability. There is a pressing need to develop novel treatments for post-traumatic headache as current treatments have a number of side effects, are contraindicated or lack efficacy. The Elliott laboratory first established models of post-traumatic headache demonstrating sensitization of trigeminal neurons in rodent models of post-traumatic headache using well-known nociceptive and behavioral markers in the pain and migraine fields1-3. Traumatic brain injury in mice increases expression of calcitonin gene related peptide (CGRP) and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) in the trigeminal pathway, changes that are accompanied by persistent headache behavior, trigeminal allodynia1-3.
The endogenous cannabinoid (eCB) system is a potential therapeutic target for post-traumatic headache. In a series of studies, our laboratory showed CB2R-mediated anti-inflammatory actions in a model of TBI, whereby the reduction of iNOS mRNA and protein and substance P immunoreactivity have implications for headache4-6. The cannabinoid receptor type-2 (CB2R) is an ideal analgesic target as it is devoid of psychoactive properties, shows anti-nociceptive actions upon stimulation, and regulates immune function. What is unclear, is precisely how anti-nociceptive actions are elicited by the CB2R, and if CB2R stimulation will be effective at alleviating trigeminal hypersensitivity in model of post-traumatic concussion or closed head injury. The objective of this study was to determine the role of the CB2R in the trigeminal pain pathway in a model of post-concussion headache, while identifying mechanisms underlying trigeminal pain after mild TBI.
Non-psychotropic cannabinoid based therapy modulates nociceptive signaling molecules, microglia, and pain behavior in a model of post-concussion headache
Neurology | Surgery
Stratton, Jarred M.; Cheng, Lan; Tyburski, Ashley L.; Perino, Jessica; and Elliott, Melanie B., "Non-psychotropic cannabinoid based therapy modulates nociceptive signaling molecules, microglia, and pain behavior in a model of post-concussion headache" (2016). Department of Neurosurgery Posters. 5.