Neuropathic pain is the result of injury to the nervous system, and different animal models have been established to meet the manifestations of neuropathy. The pharmacotherapy for neuropathic pain includes gabapentin and tramadol, but these are only partially effective when given alone. The aim of this study was to assess the antinociceptive interaction between both drugs using the isobolographic analysis and changes of the IL-1β concentration in a mouse model of neuropathic pain (partial sciatic nerve ligation or PSNL). The i.p. administration of gabapentin (5–100 mg/kg) or tramadol (12.5–100 mg/kg) displayed a dose-dependent antinociception in the hot plate assay of PSNL mice, and effects induced by gabapentin with tramadol were synergistic. Administration of gabapentin or tramadol reversed significantly the increase in the concentration of IL-1β induced by PSNL after either 7 or 14 days and their combination was significantly more potent in reversing the elevated concentration of IL-1β. The synergism obtained by the co-administration of gabapentin and tramadol is proposed to result from action on different mechanisms in pain pathways. Gabapentin or tramadol or their combination modulates the expression of pro-inflammatory cytokine, IL-1β, in a model of mice PSNL which could be due to an inhibition of glial function.
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