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To determine behavioral testing after experimental tooth movement in rats and to explore the role of nociceptin/orphanin FQ and its receptor (the N/OFQ-NOP system) in pain induced by experimental tooth movement. The mouth-wiping behavior of rats was assessed by studying behavioral responses after experimental tooth movement. The distribution of N/OFQ in the periodontal ligament, the trigeminal ganglion (TG), and the caudal one-third of the trigeminal subnucleus caudalis (Vc) was assessed by immunohistochemistry. The variations in N/OFQ expression in the TG and Vc were measured by Western blotting. The ongoing changes in the gene expression of the prepronociceptin gene and opioid receptor-like 1 receptor were assessed in the TG and Vc by real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Overall, the mouth-wiping behavior increased significantly. The behavior first increased and then gradually decreased to a low level, showing cyclical variation. N/OFQ immunoreactivity increased in the periodontal ligament after tooth movement. ppN/OFQ mRNA and protein levels showed a time-dependent increase in the TG and were positively correlated with pain stimulus. NOP gene levels showed large fluctuations. In the Vc, the expression and changes in the N/OFQ-NOP system showed the opposite trend as those noted in TG and the periodontal membrane. The N/OFQ system may have a complex regulatory function in the pain induced by tooth movement and may be related to inflammation caused by orthodontic tooth movement and periodontal damage. The specific mechanism remains to be further studied. Copyright © 2021 Zhengyu Liao et al.


Zhengyu Liao, Hu Long, Zhiping Song, Yuwei He, Wenli Lai. Behavioral Responses and Expression of Nociceptin/Orphanin FQ and Its Receptor (N/OFQ-NOP System) during Experimental Tooth Movement in Rats. Pain research & management. 2021;2021:9981732

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PMID: 34336071

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