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Approved research

Assessing NTRK1 SNPs in pain disorders

Principal Investigator: Dr Juan Carlos Arevalo
Approved Research ID: 51933
Approval date: August 30th 2019

Lay summary

Chronic pain is becoming a huge problem in society nowadays. The constant feeling of pain has negative effects on work and personal life due to anxiety, fear, depression, sleepiness and impaired social interaction, which represent a worldwide health and social burden. Indeed, these adverse effects constitute a huge economic cost, which is estimated to be around $600 billion in the US and !300 billion in the EU annually. Thus, effective treatments are urgently needed to treat chronic pain, but in order to develop them it is necessary to understand the mechanisms underlying chronic pain. Nerve growth factor (NGF) and its receptor (NTRK1) have been directly associated as pain mediators. Numerous variants of NTRK1 have been described in the human population but their biological relevance on pain is unknown. In this project, we aim to identify if any of these NTRK1 variants is associated with any pathology related with chronic pain. To this purpose, we will take advantage of the data gathered at the UK Biobank in terms of human DNA sequences and their corresponding disease/pathology information. Our research will try to identify new variants of the NTRK1 gene related with pain syndromes. The successful outcome of the proposed work will allow to compile very relevant information that will be used to study the mechanisms by which NTRK1 affects pain and eventually the design of drugs to prevent/alleviate chronic pain.