2017 Volume 40 Issue 4 Pages 473-478
Paclitaxel is a chemotherapeutic agent that causes peripheral neuropathy as its major dose-limiting side effect. However, the peripheral neuropathy is difficult to manage. A study we recently conducted showed that repetitive administration of aucubin as a prophylactic inhibits paclitaxel-induced mechanical allodynia. However, the mechanisms underlying the anti-allodynic activity of aucubin, which is a major component of Plantaginis Semen, was unclear. In addition to mechanical allodynia, aucubin inhibited spontaneous and mechanical stimuli-induced firing in spinal dorsal horn neurons; however, catalpol, a metabolite of aucubin, did not show these effects. Furthermore, paclitaxel induced the expression of CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein homologous protein, a marker of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress, in the sciatic nerve and a Schwann cell line (LY-PPB6 cells); however, this effect was inhibited by aucubin. These results suggest that aucubin inhibits paclitaxel-induced mechanical allodynia through the inhibition of ER stress in peripheral Schwann cells.