The persistence of pain after surgery increases the recovery interval from surgery to a normal quality of life. AYX1 is a DNA-decoy drug candidate designed to prevent post-surgical pain following a single intrathecal injection. Tissue injury causes a transient activation of the transcription factor EGR1 in the dorsal root ganglia-dorsal horn network, which then triggers changes in gene expression that induce neuronal hypersensitivity. AYX1 is a potent, specific inhibitor of EGR1 activity that mimics the genomic EGR1-binding sequence. Administered in the peri-operative period, AYX1 dose dependently prevents mechanical hypersensitivity in models of acute incisional (plantar), inflammatory (CFA), and chronic neuropathic pain (SNI) in rats. Furthermore, in a knee surgery model evaluating functional measures of postoperative pain, AYX1 improved weight-bearing incapacitance and spontaneous rearing compared to control. These data illustrate the potential clinical therapeutic benefits of AYX1 for preventing the transition of acute to chronic post-surgical pain.
- Post-surgical pain