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World J Anesthesiol. Jul 27, 2014; 3(2): 162-173
Published online Jul 27, 2014. doi: 10.5313/wja.v3.i2.162
Lumbar radiculopathy and its neurobiological basis
Jiann-Her Lin, Yung-Hsiao Chiang, Chih-Cheng Chen
Jiann-Her Lin, Yung-Hsiao Chiang, Department of Neurosurgery, Taipei Medical University Hospital, Taipei 11031, Taiwan
Jiann-Her Lin, Yung-Hsiao Chiang, Graduate Institute of Neural Regenerative Medicine, College of Medical Science and Technology, Taipei Medical University, Taipei 11574, Taiwan
Jiann-Her Lin, Chih-Cheng Chen, Institue of Biomedical Sciences, Academai Sinica, Taipei 11574, Taiwan
Chih-Cheng Chen, Taiwan Mouse Clinic-National Comprehensive Mouse Phenotyping and Drug Testing Center, Academia Sinica, Taipei 11574, Taiwan
Author contributions: Lin JH collected articles and wrote the manuscript; Chiang YH provided critical clinical comments and contributed to part of the writing; Chen CC designed the scope of the review and helped write the manuscript.
Supported by Grant from Taipei Medical University (TMU101-AE3-Y24 to JH Lin) and MOST 103-2325-B-001-015 to Chen CC; and by grants from Ministry of Science and Technology, Taiwan, NO. NSC 102-2325-B-001-042, NSC102-2321-B-001-056, and NSC 102-2320-B-001-021-MY3 to Chen CC
Correspondence to: Chih-Cheng Chen, PhD, Institue of Biomedical Sciences, Academai Sinica, 128 Academia Road, Section 2, Taipei 11574, Taiwan.
Telephone: +886-2-26523917
Received: January 28, 2014
Revised: May 22, 2014
Accepted: June 10, 2014
Published online: July 27, 2014
Core Tip

Core tip: Lumbar radiculopathy is the most common form of neuropathic pain. However, the diagnosis of lumbar radiculopathy is still not satisfactory because of the largely unknown neurobiological basis of neuropathic pain and paresthesia. Accumulating evidence has shown that lumbar radiculopathy is a multi-factor disease and may involve almost all types of pain, including ischemic, inflammatory, mechanical, and neuropathic pain. Ion channels such as Acid-sensing ion channel 3, Piezo2 and transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor 1 responding to tissue acidosis, mechanical force, and inflammatory mediators may be the pathways transducing the pain.