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International Journal of Inflammation - Volume 2016 2016, Article ID 3874964, 8 pages -

Research Article

National Institute of Occupational Health, 0033 Oslo, Norway

Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Oslo University Hospital, 0424 Oslo, Norway

Department of Surgical Sciences, Uppsala University, 751 85 Uppsala, Sweden

Department of Statistics, Uppsala University, 751 20 Uppsala, Sweden

Department of Immunology, Genetics and Pathology, Science for Life Laboratory, Uppsala University, 751 85 Uppsala, Sweden

Faculty of Medicine, University of Oslo, 0316 Oslo, Norway

Department of Molecular Biosciences, University of Oslo, 0371 Oslo, Norway

Received 4 January 2016; Revised 22 March 2016; Accepted 19 April 2016

Academic Editor: Sarah Howie

Copyright © 2016 Aurora Moen et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Earlier studies suggest that lumbar radicular pain following disc herniation may be associated with a local or systemic inflammatory process. In the present study, we investigated the serum inflammatory protein profile of such patients. All 45 patients were recruited from Oslo University Hospital, Ullevål, Norway, during the period 2007–2009. The new multiplex proximity extension assay PEA technology was used to analyze the levels of 92 proteins. Interestingly, the present data showed that patients with radicular pain 12 months after disc herniation may be different from other patients with regard to many measurable serum cytokines. Given a false discovery rate FDR of 0.10 and 0.05, we identified 41 and 13 proteins, respectively, which were significantly upregulated in the patients with severe pain one year after disc herniation. On the top of the list ranked by estimated increase we found C-X-C motif chemokine 5 CXCM5; 217% increase, epidermal growth factor EGF; 142% increase, and monocyte chemotactic protein 4 MCP-4; 70% increase. Moreover, a clear overall difference in the serum cytokine profile between the chronic and the recovered patients was demonstrated. Thus, the present results may be important for future protein serum profiling of lumbar radicular pain patients with regard to prognosis and choice of treatment. We conclude that serum proteins may be measurable molecular markers of persistent pain after disc herniation.

Author: Aurora Moen, Anne-Li Lind, Måns Thulin, Masood Kamali-Moghaddam, Cecilie Røe, Johannes Gjerstad, and Torsten Gordh



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