Nitric oxide generated by the nitric oxide synthase (NOS) isoforms contributes to pain processing. The selective inhibition of iNOS might represent a novel, therapeutic target for the development of antinociceptive compounds. However, few isoform-selective inhibitors of NOS have been developed. The present experiments examined the anti-inflammatory and antinociceptive activity of a selective inducible nitric oxide (iNOS) inhibitor, AR-C102222, on arachidonic acid-induced ear inflammation, Freund's complete adjuvant (FCA)-induced hyperalgesia, acetic acid-induced writhing, and tactile allodynia produced by L5 spinal nerve ligation (L5 SNL) or hindpaw incision (INC). AR-C102222 at a dose of 100 mg/kg p.o., significantly reduced inflammation produced by the application of arachidonic acid to the ear, attenuated FCA-induced mechanical hyperalgesia, and attenuated acetic acid-induced writhing. In the L5 SNL and INC surgical procedures, tactile allodynia produced by both procedures was significantly reduced by 30 mg/kg i.p. of AR-C102222. These data demonstrate that the selective inhibition of iNOS produces antinociception in different models of pain and suggest that the iNOS-NO system plays a role in pain processing. © 2005 European Federation of Chapters of the International Association for the Study of Pain.
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