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Netrin-1 as a Multitarget Barrier Stabilizer in the Peripheral Nerve after Injury

  • chen, jeremy tsung-chieh
  • schmidt, lea
  • schürger, christina
  • hankir, mohammed k.
  • krug, susanne m.
  • rittner, heike l.
Publication Date
Sep 18, 2021
DOI: 10.3390/ijms221810090
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The blood–nerve barrier and myelin barrier normally shield peripheral nerves from potentially harmful insults. They are broken down during nerve injury, which contributes to neuronal damage. Netrin-1 is a neuronal guidance protein with various established functions in the peripheral and central nervous systems / however, its role in regulating barrier integrity and pain processing after nerve injury is poorly understood. Here, we show that chronic constriction injury (CCI) in Wistar rats reduced netrin-1 protein and the netrin-1 receptor neogenin-1 (Neo1) in the sciatic nerve. Replacement of netrin-1 via systemic or local administration of the recombinant protein rescued injury-induced nociceptive hypersensitivity. This was prevented by siRNA-mediated knockdown of Neo1 in the sciatic nerve. Mechanistically, netrin-1 restored endothelial and myelin, but not perineural, barrier function as measured by fluorescent dye or fibrinogen penetration. Netrin-1 also reversed the decline in the tight junction proteins claudin-5 and claudin-19 in the sciatic nerve caused by CCI. Our findings emphasize the role of the endothelial and myelin barriers in pain processing after nerve damage and reveal that exogenous netrin-1 restores their function to mitigate CCI-induced hypersensitivity via Neo1. The netrin-1-neogenin-1 signaling pathway may thus represent a multi-target barrier protector for the treatment of neuropathic pain.

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