by Madhumathi Palaniappan on  January 18, 2017 at 3:01 PM Health Watch
  • Peripheral neuropathy is a condition that damages the peripheral nervous system.
  • Neuron signaling pathway when blocked may prevent or reverse peripheral neuropathy.
  • Antimuscarinic drugs may provide new treatment options for peripheral neuropathy.

Peripheral neuropathy is a condition that damages the peripheral nervous system (outside the brain and spinal cord).

Blocking the neuron signaling pathway may provide new treatments for peripheral neuropathy, finds a study from the University of California San Diego School of Medicine, with colleagues at the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, the University of Manitoba and St. Boniface Hospital Albrechtsen Research Centre in Canada.
New Treatment For Peripheral Neuropathy

The research findings were published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation.

Research Study
Neuron signaling pathway when blocked, may promote sensory neuron growth and thereby prevent or reverse peripheral neuropathy in cell and rodent models of type 1 and type 2 diabetes, chemotherapy-induced neuropathy and HIV.

Nigel Calcutt, Ph.D, professor of pathology at UC San Diego School of Medicine, said, "Peripheral neuropathy is a major and largely untreated cause of human suffering," "It has huge associated health care costs."

Previous research studies have found mitochondria to be playing a major key role in driving nerve recovery after injury. Mitochondria are cell organelles which play a role in driving energy for various activities.

The research team looked out for molecules and mechanisms that were used in sensory growth and regrowth. Neurites are projections from the nerve cell bodies that is connected to other neurons. This activity was found to be constrained by muscarinic acetylcholine receptors. Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter that is associated with the activation of cells.

Identifying the signaling pathway may provide new treatment options for peripheral neuropathy. Anti-muscarinic drugs that are used for other conditions may also help to treat peripheral neuropathy.

Paul Fernyhough, Ph.D, professor in the departments of pharmacology and therapeutics and physiology at University of Manitoba in Canada, said, "This is encouraging because the safety profile of anti-muscarinic drugs is well-characterized, with more than 20 years of clinical application for a variety of indications in Europe."

"The novel therapeutic application of anti-muscarinic antagonists suggested by our studies could potentially translate relatively rapidly to clinical use."

Facts on Peripheral Neuropathy
  • Diabetic peripheral neuropathy is the most common form of peripheral neuropathy.
  • Around 30-40% of cancer patients have chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy.
  • Approximately 40 million Americans were found to suffer from some form of peripheral neuropathy.
  • Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or AIDS are often accompanied with peripheral neuropathic conditions.
  • Excessive alcohol consumption and repetitive stress on one nerve may be risk factors for peripheral neuropathy.
Healthy Habits for Peripheral Neuropathy
  • Maintaining proper weight
  • Eating a balanced diet
  • Avoiding alcohol consumption
  • Following regular exercises
  1. Nigel A. Calcutt,Darrell R. Smith, Katie Frizzi, Mohammad Golam Sabbir,Subir K. Roy Chowdhury, Teresa Mixcoatl-Zecuatl,Ali Saleh, Nabeel Muttalib, Randy Van der Ploeg,Joseline Ochoa, Allison Gopaul, Lori Tessler, Jürgen Wess, Corinne G. Jolivalt, and Paul Fernyhough, 'Selective antagonism of muscarinic receptors is neuroprotective in peripheral neuropathy', The Journal of Clinical Investigation, 2017. doi:10.1172/JCI88321.
  2. The Peripheral Neuropathy - (
  3. Facts + Risk Factors - (

Source: Medindia

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