2022 MSC Poster Contest Presentation: Prrxl1 Knockout Mouse: A Model for Chronic Pain and Implications for Migraine

Title: Prrxl1 knockout mouse: A model for chronic pain and implications for migraine

Presenter: Giuseppe Cataldo, PhD, postdoc, Queen’s College, City University of New York, US

Methodology, findings and conclusions of the research
Prrxl1, a paired homeodomain transcription factor, is indispensable for the development of patterning in the trigeminal lemniscal pathway. It is also expressed by primary sensory neurons in dorsal root ganglia and their central targets in the dorsal horn. Prrxl1 deletion disrupts patterning of primary sensory afferent fibers into the spinal dorsal horn and abolishes patterning in the whisker-to-barrel cortex pathway. It has long been known that Prrxl1 deletion is associated with hypoalgesia to body stimulation. We now report that it is also associated with hyperalgesia to stimulation of the orofacial region as well as displaying significantly extended bouts of orofacial grooming. These results suggest that this mutant may be a useful, non-invasive model of orofacial pain.

Implications of the research for understanding migraine and/or its comorbidities
Our Prrxl1 knockout with its facial hyperalgesia has been shown as a new model of trigeminal neuropathic pain. This form of pain has previously been associated with migraine and the implication of this is that it may also be a novel mouse model for migraine disease leading to new avenues of study.