Gut Microbiota Modulation and Its Implications on Neuropathic Pain: A Comprehensive Literature Review

Corriero A, Giglio M, Inchingolo F, Moschetta A, Varrassi G, Puntillo F.
Gut Microbiota Modulation and Its Implications on Neuropathic Pain: A Comprehensive Literature Review.
Pain Ther. 2023 Dec 12. doi: 10.1007/s40122-023-00565-3.


Neuropathic pain (NP) is a chronic pain disorder arising from somatosensory nervous system impairment. Extensive evidence supports the notion that the gut microbiota (GM) is crucial in maintaining human health by performing vital tasks. At the same time, its disruption has been linked to the emergence and advancement of an expanding range of disorders, including NP, in which GM could play a role in its pathophysiology. The crosstalk between the nervous system and GM happens through immune mediators, metabolites, and nervous structures and involves both central and peripheral nervous systems. This literature review aims to thoroughly investigate the function of modulating GM in the treatment of NP. It will achieve this by integrating existing knowledge, identifying underlying mechanisms, and evaluating the possible clinical consequences of exploiting the gut–brain axis. We will cover the main therapeutic applications of the described GM-modulators, such as probiotics, faecal microbiota transplantation, dietary supplements and emotional support, to the main kinds of NP in which any evidence, even if only pre-clinical, has been unravelled in recent years. The explored NP areas include chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy, diabetic neuropathy, trauma-induced neuropathic pain, trigeminal neuralgia, postherpetic neuralgia and low back pain.

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L'Associazione Italiana per lo Studio del Dolore è il capitolo italiano dell'International Association for the Study of Pain IASP® e della European Pain Federation EFIC®