An ointment to remove nerve pain? Well, it may turn out to be true if the experiments at the Northwestern University turn out to be effective in human clinical trials.
Scientists at Northwestern University had previously shown that depletion of ganglioside GM3 helps wound healing in diabetic mice. In current experiments, they looked to see if depleting GM3 could reverse neuropathic pain associated with type 2 diabetes.
They applied an ointment that could deplete GM3 on the footpads of mice. The diabetic mice without the ointment reacted strongly to the pain induced on the footpad by withdrawing their feet quickly.
However, the diabetic mice that were treated with the ointment were able to withstand the pain and did not withdraw their feet as quickly as the untreated diabetic mice.
“The GM3-depleting ointment is useful in treating neuropathic pain associated with diabetes. GM3 levels are high in diabetic mice with neuropathic pain. This is seen even in the skin of humans.”
The results of this study are important as it gives scientists a chance to test the effect of this ointment in humans. It will also provide a therapy for diabetic neuropathy that afflicts nearly 25% of diabetic patients.
GM3 appears to control neuropathy and neuropathic pain associated with diabetes.
By depleting GM3, scientists hope to translate the results of gene therapy that relieves neuropathic pain into human clinical trials and thus aim to control and manage the condition of diabetic neuropathy.
In the future, tackling neuropathic pain may just be an ointment away!