AS1069562 is the (+)-isomer of indeloxazine, which had been clinically used as a cerebral activator for the treatment of cerebrovascular diseases with serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibition (SNRI) and neuroprotection. Here, we compared the analgesic effects of repeated treatment with AS1069562 and duloxetine, a selective SNRI, on pain-related behavior in a rat model of streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic neuropathy. Further, we also evaluated the effects on the expression of neurotrophic factors and nerve conduction velocity. AS1069562 and duloxetine by single daily administration for 4 weeks significantly improved mechanical allodynia in STZ-induced diabetic rats and did not affect plasma glucose level or body weight. Interestingly, the analgesic effect of AS1069562 continued after a consecutive 1-week treatment discontinuation, although the plasma concentration of AS1069562 was reduced to undetectable levels. In contrast, the efficacy of duloxetine disappeared after treatment discontinuation. Expression analysis demonstrated that AS1069562 significantly restored decreased insulin-like growth factor 1 and fibroblast growth factor 2 mRNA levels in dorsal root ganglion and spinal cord, respectively, whereas duloxetine did not affect the expression levels of neurotrophic factors. In addition, AS1069562 reversed the slowing of nerve conduction velocity. The results of this study indicate that the analgesic effect of repeated dosing of AS1069562 but not duloxetine is persistent even after a 1-week drug discontinuation in STZ-induced diabetic rats. Restoration of neurotrophic factors may be involved in the curative-like pharmacological effect of this agent. Thus, AS1069562 may potentially offer a better treatment option for patients with painful diabetic neuropathy than duloxetine via different mechanisms.
Keywords: AS1069562; Allodynia; Antidepressant; Diabetic neuropathy; Duloxetine; Pain.
Copyright © 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.