Heat-shock protein 90 (Hsp90) promotes opioid-induced anti-nociception by an ERK mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) mechanism in mouse brain.

TitleHeat-shock protein 90 (Hsp90) promotes opioid-induced anti-nociception by an ERK mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) mechanism in mouse brain.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2017
AuthorsLei W, Mullen N, McCarthy S, Brann C, Richard P, Cormier J, Edwards K, Bilsky EJ, Streicher JM
JournalJ Biol Chem
Date Published2017 Jun 23
KeywordsAnalgesics, Opioid, Animals, Benzoquinones, Brain Stem, CHO Cells, Cricetinae, Cricetulus, Extracellular Signal-Regulated MAP Kinases, HEK293 Cells, HSP90 Heat-Shock Proteins, Humans, Lactams, Macrocyclic, Male, MAP Kinase Signaling System, Mice, Neuralgia, Nociception

Recent advances in developing opioid treatments for pain with reduced side effects have focused on the signaling cascades of the μ-opioid receptor (MOR). However, few such signaling targets have been identified for exploitation. To address this need, we explored the role of heat-shock protein 90 (Hsp90) in opioid-induced MOR signaling and pain, which has only been studied in four previous articles. First, in four cell models of MOR signaling, we found that Hsp90 inhibition for 24 h with the inhibitor 17-N-allylamino-17-demethoxygeldanamycin (17-AAG) had different effects on protein expression and opioid signaling in each line, suggesting that cell models may not be reliable for predicting pharmacology with this protein. We thus developed an in vivo model using CD-1 mice with an intracerebroventricular injection of 17-AAG for 24 h. We found that Hsp90 inhibition strongly blocked morphine-induced anti-nociception in models of post-surgical and HIV neuropathic pain but only slightly blocked anti-nociception in a naive tail-flick model, while enhancing morphine-induced precipitated withdrawal. Seeking a mechanism for these changes, we found that Hsp90 inhibition blocks ERK MAPK activation in the periaqueductal gray and caudal brain stem. We tested these signaling changes by inhibiting ERK in the above-mentioned pain models and found that ERK inhibition could account for all of the changes in anti-nociception induced by Hsp90 inhibition. Taken together, these findings suggest that Hsp90 promotes opioid-induced anti-nociception by an ERK mechanism in mouse brain and that Hsp90 could be a future target for improving the therapeutic index of opioid drugs.

Alternate JournalJ. Biol. Chem.
PubMed ID28450396
PubMed Central IDPMC5481554
Grant ListP20 GM103643 / GM / NIGMS NIH HHS / United States
Faculty Member Reference: 
John M. Streicher, PhD