No pain, time gained

CGRPThe loss of pain-transducing receptors called TRPV1 paves the way to a long life, according to a study published May 22 in Cell. Mice lacking TRPV1 live longer and have a more youthful metabolism than age-matched control mice, and this longevity relied on decreasing calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP). The results suggest that TRPV1 blockers in development for pain, or CGRP blockers now being tested to treat migraine headaches, could have health-promoting side effects.

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The scent of a man

male experimentersMice show reduced pain responses in the presence of men compared to that of women, reports a study published in Nature Methods on April 28. The study found that odors given off by males—human or other species—induced stress responses in mice sufficient to trigger pain relief. This argues that the sex of experimenters is worth taking into account in rodent studies.

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Neurons get touchy with STOML3

STOML3Stomatin-like protein 3 (STOML3) boosts neural and channel responses to mechanical stimuli, according to a paper published March 24 in Nature Communications. The study found touch sensitive sensory neurons responded to displacements as small as 10 nanometers (nm), but this fine sensitivity vanished in neurons lacking STOML3.

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