Group II metabotropic glutamate receptor activation on peripheral nociceptors modulates TRPV1 function

Brain Res. 2009 Jan 12;1248:86-95. doi: 10.1016/j.brainres.2008.10.066. Epub 2008 Nov 7.


Transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1) receptors are critical to nociceptive processing. Understanding how these receptors are modulated gives insight to potential therapies for pain. We demonstrate using double labeling immunohistochemistry that Group II metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) are co-expressed with TRPV1 on rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) cells. In behavioral studies, intraplantar 0.1 microM APDC, a group II agonist, significantly attenuates capsaicin-induced nociceptive behaviors through a local effect. The APDC-induced inhibition of capsaicin responses is blocked by 1 microM LY341495, a group II antagonist. At the single fiber level, nociceptor responses to capsaicin are significantly decreased following exposure to APDC and this effect is blocked by LY341495. Finally, activation of peripheral group II mGluRs inhibits forskolin-induced thermal hyperalgesia and nociceptor heat sensitization, suggesting group II receptors are negatively coupled to the cAMP/PKA pathway. The data indicate that group II mGluRs and TRPV1 receptors are co-expressed on peripheral nociceptors and activation of mGluRs can inhibit painful sensory transmission following TRPV1 activation. The data are consistent with group II and TRPV1 receptors being linked intracellularly by the cAMP/PKA pathway. Peripheral group II mGluRs are important targets for drug discovery in controlling TRPV1-induced nociception.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acids / pharmacology
  • Animals
  • Capsaicin / pharmacology
  • Colforsin / pharmacology
  • Electrophysiological Phenomena
  • Ganglia, Spinal / metabolism*
  • Hot Temperature
  • Hyperalgesia / physiopathology
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Male
  • Nociceptors / physiology*
  • Pain / physiopathology
  • Pain Measurement
  • Proline / analogs & derivatives
  • Proline / pharmacology
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Receptors, Metabotropic Glutamate / metabolism*
  • TRPV Cation Channels / metabolism*
  • Xanthenes / pharmacology


  • 4-aminopyrrolidine-2,4-dicarboxylic acid
  • Amino Acids
  • LY 341495
  • Receptors, Metabotropic Glutamate
  • TRPV Cation Channels
  • TRPV1 receptor
  • Xanthenes
  • metabotropic glutamate receptor 2
  • Colforsin
  • Proline
  • Capsaicin