Effects of microRNA-223 on morphine analgesic tolerance by targeting NLRP3 in a rat model of neuropathic pain

Mol Pain. 2017 Jan-Dec;13:1744806917706582. doi: 10.1177/1744806917706582.

Abstract

Objective To investigate the effects of microRNA-223 on morphine analgesic tolerance by targeting NLRP3 in a rat model of neuropathic pain. Methods Our study selected 100 clean grade healthy Sprague-Dawley adult male rats weighing 200 to 250 g. After establishment of a rat model of chronic constriction injury, these rats were divided into 10 groups (10 rats in each group): the normal control, sham operation, chronic constriction injury, normal saline, morphine, miR-223, NLRP3, miR-223 + morphine, NLRP3 + morphine, and miR-223 + NLRP3 + morphine groups. The real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction assay, Western blotting, and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay were used for detecting the mRNA and protein expressions of NLRP3, apoptosis-associated speck-like protein, Caspase-1, Interleukin (IL)-1β, and IL-18 in sections of lumbar spinal cord. Immunohistochemistry was applied for detecting the positive rates of NLRP3, apoptosis-associated speck-like protein, Caspase-1, IL-1β, and IL-18. Results The paw withdrawal threshold and percentage maximum possible effect (%MPE) were higher in chronic constriction injury group when compared with the normal control and sham operation groups. Behavioral tests showed that compared with the chronic constriction injury and normal saline groups, the morphine and miR-223 + morphine groups showed obvious analgesic effects. Expressions of miR-223 in the miR-223, miR-223 + morphine, and miR-223 + NLRP3 + morphine were significantly higher than those in the chronic constriction injury, normal saline, and morphine groups. Compared with chronic constriction injury, normal saline and morphine groups, the mRNA and protein expressions of NLRP3, apoptosis-associated speck-like protein, Caspase-1, IL-1β, and IL-18 were significantly decreased in the miR-223 and miR-223 + morphine groups, while mRNA and protein expressions of NLRP3, apoptosis-associated speck-like protein, Caspase-1, IL-1β, and IL-18 were significantly increased in the NLRP3 and NLRP3 + morphine group. Conclusion Our study provides strong evidence that miR-223 could suppress the activities of NLRP3 inflammasomes ( NLRP3, apoptosis-associated speck-like protein, and Caspase-1) to relieve morphine analgesic tolerance in rats by down-regulating NLRP3.

Keywords: MicroRNA-223; NLRP3; morphine analgesic tolerance; neuropathic pain.

MeSH terms

  • Analgesics, Opioid / therapeutic use
  • Animals
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Interleukin-18 / metabolism
  • Interleukin-1beta / metabolism
  • MicroRNAs / genetics
  • MicroRNAs / metabolism*
  • Morphine
  • NLR Family, Pyrin Domain-Containing 3 Protein / metabolism*
  • Neuralgia / drug therapy*
  • Neuralgia / metabolism*
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley

Substances

  • Analgesics, Opioid
  • Interleukin-18
  • Interleukin-1beta
  • MIRN223 microRNA, rat
  • MicroRNAs
  • NLR Family, Pyrin Domain-Containing 3 Protein
  • Nlrp3 protein, rat
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Morphine