Neuronal circuitry for pain processing in the dorsal horn

Nat Rev Neurosci. 2010 Dec;11(12):823-36. doi: 10.1038/nrn2947. Epub 2010 Nov 11.


Neurons in the spinal dorsal horn process sensory information, which is then transmitted to several brain regions, including those responsible for pain perception. The dorsal horn provides numerous potential targets for the development of novel analgesics and is thought to undergo changes that contribute to the exaggerated pain felt after nerve injury and inflammation. Despite its obvious importance, we still know little about the neuronal circuits that process sensory information, mainly because of the heterogeneity of the various neuronal components that make up these circuits. Recent studies have begun to shed light on the neuronal organization and circuitry of this complex region.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Afferent Pathways / pathology
  • Afferent Pathways / physiopathology
  • Animals
  • Brain / pathology
  • Brain / physiopathology
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Humans
  • Nerve Net / pathology
  • Nerve Net / physiopathology*
  • Nociceptors / physiology*
  • Pain / pathology*
  • Posterior Horn Cells / physiopathology*