Increased brain-derived neurotrophic factor immunoreactivity in rat dorsal root ganglia and spinal cord following peripheral inflammation

Brain Res. 1997 Aug 1;764(1-2):269-72. doi: 10.1016/s0006-8993(97)00597-0.


Our recent study showed that peripheral inflammation induced an increased expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) mRNA which was mediated by nerve growth factor (NGF) in the dorsal root ganglion (DRG). In the present study, we evaluated the change of BDNF immunoreactivity in the DRG and spinal cord following peripheral inflammation by means of immunohistochemistry. Significant increases in the percentage of BDNF-immunoreactive (IR) neuron profiles in the L5 DRG and marked elevation in the expression of BDNF-IR terminals in the spinal dorsal horn were observed following peripheral tissue inflammation produced by an intraplantar injection of Freund's adjuvant into the rat paws. These findings suggest that peripheral tissue inflammation induces an increased BDNF synthesis in the DRG and an elevated anterograde transport of BDNF to the spinal dorsal horn. The functional role of this increased BDNF was discussed briefly.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor / metabolism*
  • Freund's Adjuvant
  • Functional Laterality / physiology
  • Ganglia, Spinal / metabolism*
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Inflammation / chemically induced
  • Inflammation / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Spinal Cord / metabolism*
  • Time Factors


  • Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor
  • Freund's Adjuvant