The rapid effects of inflammatory mediators on ion channels sensitize neurons during inflammation. Blocking the formation and release of these substances through cyclo-oxygenase inhibitors reverses this process and decreases pain.
Serotonin plays a unique role in visceral sensation from the gastrointestinal tract. Serotonin release from enteroendocrine cells within the mucosa interacts with G-protein-coupled 5-HT receptors on afferent neurons and alters the properties of ion channels, including the TRPV1 receptor. Modulation of this heat- and proton-sensitive channel allows current flow and thus neuron activation at normal body temperatures, thereby contributing to symptoms in patients with functional diseases such as irritable bowel syndrome.
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