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Chronic Pain Press Releases

The Interagency Pain Research Portfolio website

Federal pain research database launched
Tuesday, May 27, 2014
The Interagency Pain Research Portfolio (IPRP), a database that provides information about pain research and training activities supported by the federal government, has been launched by six federal agencies.

TRPV1 Image

Scientists take a close-up of key pain-sensing molecule
Friday, May 16, 2014
A revolutionary microscopy technique could help design better treatments for chronic pain

A Map of Chronic Pain

NIH-funded study suggests brain is hard-wired for chronic pain
Tuesday, Sep 17, 2013
The structure of the brain may predict whether a person will suffer chronic low back pain, according to researchers who used brain scans. The results, published in the journal Pain, support the growing idea that the brain plays a critical role in chronic pain, a concept that may lead to changes in the way doctors treat patients. The research was supported by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), part of the National Institutes of Health.

Society for Neuroscience 2012 meeting logo

Breaking News from Society for Neuroscience 2012
Wednesday, Oct 17, 2012
Hundreds of NIH-funded studies are being presented at the 2012 Society for Neuroscience annual meeting. Here, the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke has highlighted a selection of studies and events led by our grantees.

The kappa-opioid receptor is shown bound to the drug JDTic, superimposed with a poppy flower.

Up close with opioid receptors
Wednesday, May 2, 2012
Researchers have taken the closest-yet look at the structures of opioid receptors. Drugs that target these receptors are widely prescribed for treating acute and chronic pain, but their long-term use carries a risk of addiction and tolerance. The new findings might aid development of safer painkillers and addiction-fighting medications.

NINDS Logo thumbnail

Members of new Interagency Pain Research Coordinating Committee announced
Monday, Feb 13, 2012
NIH announced the members of the new Interagency Pain Research Coordinating Committee chaired by NINDS Director Story Landis, Ph.D. The IPRCC includes researchers, members of nonprofit public advocacy organizations, and representatives from 7 federal agencies that deal with pain research and patient care.

TRPV1 (green) and ChemR23 (red) found in sensory neurons

‘Resolvins’ May Help Resolve Chronic Inflammatory Pain
Friday, Sep 17, 2010
Chronic inflammatory pain is among the most common health problems and the most difficult to treat. New research points to resolvins – small molecules derived from the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish – as a possible alternative treatment for inflammatory pain when other drugs prove inadequate. Resolvins help put an end to inflammation and affect how pain-sensing nerve cells respond to inflammation.

NIH Launches the Human Connectome Project to Unravel the Brain’s Connections
Wednesday, Jul 15, 2009
The National Institutes of Health Blueprint for Neuroscience Research is launching a $30 million project that will use cutting-edge brain imaging technologies to map the circuitry of the healthy adult human brain. By systematically collecting brain imaging data from hundreds of subjects, the Human Connectome Project (HCP) will yield insight into how brain connections underlie brain function, and will open up new lines of inquiry for human neuroscience.

Scientists Zero in on the Cellular Machinery that Enables Neurons to Fire
Wednesday, Nov 14, 2007
If you ever had a set of Micronauts – toy robots with removable body parts – you probably had fun swapping their heads, imagining how it would affect their behavior. Scientists supported by the National Institutes of Health have been performing similar experiments on ion channels – pores in our nerve cells – to sort out the channels' key functional parts.

Treatment Blocks Pain Without Disrupting Other Functions
Wednesday, Oct 3, 2007
A combination of two drugs can selectively block pain-sensing neurons in rats without impairing movement or other sensations such as touch, according to a new study by National Institutes of Health (NIH)-supported investigators. The finding suggests an improved way to treat pain from childbirth and surgical procedures. It may also lead to new treatments to help the millions of Americans who suffer from chronic pain.

Gene Variation Affects Pain Sensitivity and Risk of Chronic Pain: Finding May Lead to New Treatments
Sunday, Oct 22, 2006
A new NIH-funded study shows that a specific gene variant in humans affects both sensitivity to short-term (acute) pain in healthy volunteers and the risk of developing chronic pain after one kind of back surgery. Blocking increased activity of this gene after nerve injury or inflammation in animals prevented development of chronic pain.

Study Finds Loss of Small Nerve Fibers in Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS)
Friday, May 19, 2006
A new study shows that a reduction in small-diameter nerve fibers is evident in the devastating chronic pain syndrome known as complex regional pain syndrome-type I (CRPS-I), which was formerly known as reflex sympathetic dystrophy. This finding of nerve damage could provide a biomarker, or a specific physical trait, that clinicians could use in the future to help diagnose and measure the natural history of CRPS.

Expectations of Pain: I Think, Therefore I Am
Wednesday, Feb 15, 2006
While the theory that “mind over matter” exists is an ancient belief, the scientific studies to support this idea have remained elusive. A new study provides brain imaging evidence that positive thinking interacts with and shapes the sensory experience of pain. This study suggests that decreasing the expectation of pain can reduce both the pain-related brain activity and perception of pain intensity. This knowledge may lead to new and effective ways to manage chronic pain.

Gene Therapy Relieves Neuropathic Pain in Rats
Tuesday, Jun 28, 2005
Using a weakened herpes virus to deliver a neurotransmitter-related gene to sensory neurons alleviates pain for up to 6 weeks in rats with chronic pain caused by nerve damage, a new study shows. The findings may lead to the first effective treatment for people affected by this type of "neuropathic" pain.

Amid Ongoing Controversy, Researchers Find Opiates Relieve Chronic Pain From Nervous System Damage
Monday, May 12, 2003
A new study shows that opioid drugs taken orally could provide relief for some of the more than 2 million Americans suffering with chronic pain resulting from damage to the nervous system.
Fact Sheet

Study Links Chronic Pain to Signals in the Brain
Tuesday, Jan 7, 2003
For centuries, doctors have tried to find effective ways to treat chronic pain, a devastating neurological disorder that affects almost 90 million Americans. A new study shows that two proteins in the brain trigger the neuronal changes that amplify and sustain this type of pain. The finding may lead to new ways of treating chronic pain.
Fact Sheet

New Target Identified for Chronic Pain Therapy
Thursday, Nov 18, 1999
Scientists funded by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) may soon be able to reduce sensitivity to stimuli that are associated with chronic neuropathic and inflammatory pain by disabling certain nerve cells that send pain signals to the brain.