Oncode Investigator Mario van der Stelt and his lab discovered a potential new drug that suppresses chemotherapy-induced neuropathic pain. The results are published in Nature Communications.
Neuropathic pain is a common side effect of chemotherapy and one of the major reasons for discontinuation of the treatment. LEI-515 is a substance that stops the breakdown of a natural compound in our bodies that’s similar to a component found in marijuana (2-arachidonoylglycerol).
LEI-515 reduced the neuropathic pain caused by a chemotherapeutic drug called paclitaxel in a mouse model. Unlike some medications or substances, LEI-515 doesn’t cause behavioral changes (psychoactive effects) or lead to physical dependence in mice.
This study provides a basis for creating new pain-relief drugs (analgesics) with fewer side effects for cancer patients.
Mirjam Huizenga, first author of the paper, explains, “Cancer patients that suffer from chemotherapy-induced neuropathic pain are in dire need for effective medication without side effects, and our study provides promising results towards that goal.”
Ming Jiang et al, A monoacylglycerol lipase inhibitor showing therapeutic efficacy in mice without central side effects or dependence, Nature Communications (2023). DOI: 10.1038/s41467-023-43606-3
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