The CB R agonist AM1710, examined in animal models of peripheral neuropathy, is effective in controlling aberrant light touch sensitivity, referred to as mechanical allodynia. However, nonspecific binding of AM1710 to CB R, either peripherally or centrally, could be partially responsible for the analgesic effects of AM1710. Thus, we sought to determine in mice whether spinal (intrathecal; i.t.) or peripheral AM1710 administration could lead to anti-allodynia by reducing the protein expression of spinal and dorsal root ganglia (DRG) proinflammatory cytokines and elevating the anti-inflammatory cytokine interleukin-10 (IL-10) in the absence of CB R. Macrophage cell cultures were examined to characterize AM1710-mediated suppression of the proinflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α). Either i.p. or i.t. AM1710 reversed CCI-induced mechanical allodynia to sham levels in CB R (-/-), (+/-), (+/+) mice. CCI-induced neuropathy decreased IL-10 immunoreactivity (IR) in the dorsal root ganglia (DRG) and the dorsal horn of the spinal cord, with i.t. AM1710 restoring basal IL-10 IR. CCI-induced elevations in proinflammatory cytokine IR were decreased within the spinal cord only after i.t. AM1710 in all mouse genotypes. Meanwhile, within DRG tissue from neuropathic mice, proinflammatory cytokines were decreased following either i.p. or i.t. AM1710. Analysis of cultured supernatants revealed AM1710 decreased TNF-alpha protein. We conclude that CB R is dispensable for either peripheral or central anti-allodynic actions of AM1710 in neuropathic mice. Cannabinoid CB R agonists produce heightened spinal IL-10 which may be clinically relevant to successfully treat neuropathic pain.
© 2020 The Authors. Brain and Behavior published by Wiley Periodicals LLC.