Granulocyte colony stimulating factor (GCSF) treatment in neuropathic pain

mingfeng liao, Po-Kuan Chao, Long-Sun Ro


Granulocyte colony stimulating factor (GCSF) is an endogenous growth factor that can stimulate granulocyte formation and is used widely in hematogenous disease without significant clinical side effects. Several clinical and animal studies had showed that both a single high-dose and repeated low-dose systemic GCSF treatment can attenuate neuropathic pain after central or peripheral nerve injury. GCSF treatment can recruit more opioid containing neutrophils to injured tissue, up-regulate opioid receptors (mu opioid receptor) on the injured nerve, which decreased nociceptive signals from injured nerve to the spinal dorsal horn. Thereafter, activated microglia, increased phosphorylated-p38 (p-p38) and pro-inflammatory cytokines on the spinal dorsal horn are suppressed, which further attenuated neuropathic pain. The systemic GCSF administration may avoid the addiction side effect induced by repeated exogenous opioid exposure and provide a new therapeutic strategy to treat neuropathic pain.


neuropathic pain, granulocyte colony stimulating factor, opioid receptor, chronic constriction injury.

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