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The IASP Pain Research Forum will host a seminar with Dayna Averitt, PhD, Texas Woman’s University, Denton, US. A Q&A session moderated by Richard Traub, PhD, University of Maryland School of Dentistry, Baltimore, US, will follow the presentation.
Here is an abstract from Dr. Averitt
Approximately a quarter of the population experiences craniofacial pain mediated by the trigeminal neurosensory system. Many trigeminal pain disorders such as migraine, TMD pain, burning mouth syndrome, and trigeminal neuralgia are two-to-four times more common in women. One theory for the prevalence of trigeminal pain disorders in females is hormone modulation of trigeminal pain mechanisms. While there is a rich literature implicating gonadal hormones in the modulation of trigeminal pain, the literature is complex and controversial on whether estrogen enhances or reduces pain. Within this realm, our recent work has focused on determining the effects of estradiol on serotonergic neuroimmune modulation of trigeminal nociceptors. In the periphery, serotonin is a pronociceptive and proinflammatory mediator released by a variety of immune cells and activates and sensitizes trigeminal nociceptors. This seminar will present recent findings from our lab that indicate that estradiol modulates serotonergic nociceptive signaling in the trigeminal system that is dependent on the estrous cycle, dosage and timing of estradiol treatment, involves the nuclear estrogen receptors, and that serotonin and estradiol target both macrophages and trigeminal nociceptors to modulate trigeminal pain.