Prostacyclin (PGI2) is well known to play crucial roles in induction of edema and pain behavior in the periphery. In the present study, we investigated the central role of PGI2 in inflammatory pain. Intraplantar injection of carrageenan markedly induced the expression of prostacyclin receptor (IP receptor) mRNA with the maximum at 6 h, coincidently induction of the inducible form of cyclooxygenase (COX-2), although IP receptor mRNA was weakly expressed in the spinal cord of naive mice. Intrathecal administration of the IP agonist cicaprost induced mechanical hyperalgesia 6 h after carrageenan injection. These results suggest that PGI2 is involved in pain transmission at the spinal cord following expression of IP receptor mRNA induced by peripheral inflammation.