Spasticity is a common complication in patients with spinal cord injury (SCI) and adversely affects patients' quality of life. Little is known about the distribution of the serotonin 1F receptor (5-HT1FR) in the spinal cord, especially in relation to the spasticity caused by SCI. Adult male Wistar rats were divided into a sham-operation group and spinalized group. SCI-induced spasticity was caused by spinal transection at the second sacral segment. The spinal cord below the transection was obtained at the end of the experiment. The expression and distribution of 5-HT1FR in the spinal cord were analyzed. The results showed that the expression of 5-HT1FR (mRNA and protein) exhibited the same downward trend after spinal transection and reached the lowest expression level at 2 and 5 days, respectively. The expression of 5-HT1FR (mRNA and protein) thereafter gradually approached the levels in the sham-operation group after 60 days. Immunostaining suggested that 5-HT1FR showed particularly strong expression in the ventral horn (VH) region. The time course of 5-HT1FR mRNA downregulation is positively correlated with the development of tail spasticity after sacral spinal cord transection. There may be a connection between 5-HT1FR and the occurrence of spasticity, but elucidation of the specific mechanism needs further experimental verification.
Keywords: 5-HT1FR; Spasticity; Spinal cord injury.
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