Use of bulleyaconitine A as an adjuvant for prolonged cutaneous analgesia in the rat.
BACKGROUND: Bulleyaconitine A (BLA) is an analgesic and antiinflammatory drug isolated from Aconitum plants. BLA has several potential targets, including voltage-gated Na+ channels. We tested whether BLA elicited long-lasting cutaneous analgesia, when co-injected with lidocaine and epinephrine, as a model for prolonged infiltration anesthesia. METHODS: The local anesthetic properties of BLA were assessed by the patch-clamp technique in HEK293t cells expressing Nav1.7 and Nav1.8 neuronal Na+ channels, both crucial for nociception. Drug solutions (0.6 mL) were injected subcutaneously via rat shaved dorsal skin. Inhibition of the cutaneous trunci muscle reflex was evaluated by pinpricks. Skin cross-sections were stained with hematoxylin and eosin or with antibodies against PGP9.5. RESULTS: BLA at 10 microM interacted minimally with resting or inactivated Nav1.7 and Nav1.8 Na+ channels when infrequently stimulated to +50 mV for 3 ms. However, when stimulated at 2 Hz for 1000 pulses, their peak Na+ currents were >90% reduced by BLA. This use-dependent inhibition was not significantly reversed after 15-min washing. Complete nociceptive blockade after injection of lidocaine (0.5%)/epinephrine (1:200,000) lasted for approximately 1 h in rats; full recovery occurred after approximately 6 h. Co-injection of 0.125 mM BLA with lidocaine/epinephrine increased the duration of complete nociceptive blockade to 24 h. Full recovery occurred after approximately 6 days. Skin histology including peripheral nerve fibers appeared unaffected by BLA. CONCLUSIONS: BLA inhibits Nav1.7 and Nav1.8 Na+ currents in a use-dependent manner. Co-injection of BLA at
Wang, C-F; Gerner, P; Schmidt, B; Xu, ZZ; Nau, C; Wang, S-Y; Ji, R-R; Wang, GK
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