Post-injury repeated administrations of minocycline improve the antinociceptive effect of morphine in chronic constriction injury model of neuropathic pain in rat

Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 2012 Oct;102(4):520-5. doi: 10.1016/j.pbb.2012.07.001. Epub 2012 Jul 10.


It is confirmed that pharmacological attenuation of glial cells can alleviate neuropathic pain by lowering proinflammatory cytokine expression. The present study tries to confirm that post-injury administration of glia inhibitor, minocycline, can attenuate the neuropathic pain symptoms and improves the efficacy of morphine anti-nociception in chronic constriction injury (CCI). Male Wistar rats (230-270 g) underwent surgery for induction CCI model of neuropathy. For assessment of the thermal hyperalgesia and mechanical allodynia after CCI induction, morphine (2.5, 5, 7.5, 10 and 15 mg/kg; s.c.) and saline were administered on post-operative days (PODs) 0, 6 and 14. Hargreaves and Von-Frey tests were performed before and 30 min after morphine administration, respectively. The results showed significant decrease in antinociceptive effect of morphine on POD 6 compared to POD 0 only at the dose of 5 mg/kg. On the other hand, on POD 14 the antinociceptive effect of morphine (5, 7.5, 10 and 15 mg/kg) significantly decreased in comparison with POD 0. In another set of experiments, animals received minocycline (10, 20 and 40 mg/kg; i.p.) for eight days from POD 6 to 13 and then the antinociceptive effect of single dose of morphine 5 mg/kg was tested on POD 14. Behavioral tests showed that minocycline (40 mg/kg) could effectively attenuate the thermal hyperalgesia and mechanical allodynia on POD 13. Moreover, minocycline (40, 20 mg/kg) improved the anti-hyperalgesic, and minocycline (40 mg/kg) improved the anti-allodynic effects of morphine 5 mg/kg on POD 14. It seems that the reduction of antinociceptive effect of morphine after CCI may be mediated through glia activation. Modulation of glial activity by minocycline can attenuate CCI-induced neuropathic pain. It is also shown that repeated post-injury administration of minocycline improves the antinociceptive effect of morphine in neuropathic pain.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Drug Synergism
  • Male
  • Minocycline / administration & dosage*
  • Morphine / administration & dosage
  • Morphine / therapeutic use*
  • Neuralgia / drug therapy*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar


  • Morphine
  • Minocycline