Central Pain Following a Collagenase-Induced Hematoma in the Basal Ganglia and Thalamus Can Be Reversed with Gabapentin

  • G Roy University of Montreal, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Department of Veterinary Biomedicine, St-Hyacinthe, Quebec
  • H Orlando University of Montreal, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Department of Veterinary Biomedicine, St-Hyacinthe, Quebec
  • P Vachon University of Montreal, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Department of Veterinary Biomedicine, St-Hyacinthe, Quebec

Abstract

The objective of this study was to evaluate pain sensitization in rats following the induction of an intracerebral haemorrhage located in the basal ganglia and/or thalamus using the Rosenberg model (intracerebral injection of collagenase). Thirty male Sprague-Dawley rats weighing between 175-300 g were used. In a first experiment, 3 groups of 6 animals were used to evaluate pain threshold using the Hargreaves test (thermal sensitivity). Following 3 days of behavioural testing (baseline values), animals in each group were injected intracerebrally either with 0.5, 1 or 2 μL of a collagenase solution (0.5 U/2 μL Type VII collagenase) which induced a hematoma in the right caudoputamen nucleus and/or thalamus. They were then tested for the next 9 consecutive days. No pain-related behavioural changes were observed following injections with 0.5 and 1 μL of collagenase. However with 2 μL, reaction times were significantly faster on days 3, 4, 5, 6 (p < 0.0001) and 7 (p < 0.006) in the right and left hind paws compared to baseline values. The lesion was localized only in the caudoputamen nucleus for animals receiving 0.5 and 1 μL of collagenase whereas lesions extended in the ipsilateral thalamic nuclei (lateral-dorsal and lateral-posterior nuclei) for animals receiving 2 μL of collagenase. In a second experiment, gabapentin reversed mechanical allodynia, evaluated with von Frey filaments, and hyperalgesia, evaluated with Hargreaves test, in rats (n=6) following a collagenase-induced (3 μL) hematoma. In conclusion, these preliminary results suggest that central pain was induced in rats with a collagenase-induced intracerebral haemorrhage localized in the caudoputamen nuclei most probably associated with lesions to the thalamus, and concurrent allodynia and hyperalgesia were reduced with gabapentin treatment.

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