Long-term diabetic microenvironment augments the decay rate of capsaicin-induced currents in mouse dorsal root ganglion neurons

Xingjuan Chen, Yaqian Duan, Ashley M. Riley, Megan A. Welch, Fletcher A. White, Maria B. Grant, Alexander G. Obukhov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations


Individuals with end-stage diabetic peripheral neuropathy present with decreased pain sensation. Transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 (TRPV1) is implicated in pain signaling and resides on sensory dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. We investigated the expression and functional activity of TRPV1 in DRG neurons of the Ins2+/Akita mouse at 9 months of diabetes using immunohistochemistry, live single cell calcium imaging, and whole-cell patch-clamp electrophysiology. 20,70-Dichlorodihydrofluorescein diacetate (DCFH-DA) fluorescence assay was used to determine the level of Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) in DRGs. Although TRPV1 expressing neuron percentage was increased in Ins2+/Akita DRGs at 9 months of diabetes compared to control, capsaicin-induced Ca2+ influx was smaller in isolated Ins2+/Akita DRG neurons, indicating impaired TRPV1 function. Consistently, capsaicin-induced Ca2+ influx was decreased in control DRG neurons cultured in the presence of 25 mM glucose for seven days versus those cultured with 5.5 mM glucose. The high glucose environment increased cytoplasmic ROS accumulation in cultured DRG neurons. Patch-clamp recordings revealed that capsaicin-activated currents decayed faster in isolated Ins2+/Akita DRG neurons as compared to those in control neurons. We propose that in poorly controlled diabetes, the accelerated rate of capsaicin-sensitive TRPV1 current decay in DRG neurons decreases overall TRPV1 activity and contributes to peripheral neuropathy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number775
Issue number4
StatePublished - Feb 21 2019


  • Calcium influx
  • Capsaicin
  • DRG neurons
  • Ins2 mouse
  • ROS
  • TRPV1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Chemistry (miscellaneous)
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Drug Discovery
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry

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