2Sechenov First Moscow State Medical University, Institute of Molecular Medicine, 119991 Moscow, Russia
* To whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received June 14, 2018; Revised September 28, 2018; Accepted September 28, 2018
TRPA1 is a cation channel located on the plasma membrane of many types of human and animal cells, including skin sensory neurons and epithelial cells of the intestine, lungs, urinary bladder, etc. TRPA1 is the major chemosensor that also responds to thermal and mechanical stimuli. Substances that activate TRPA1, e.g., allyl isothiocyanates (pungent components of mustard, horseradish, and wasabi), cinnamaldehyde from cinnamon, organosulfur compounds from garlic and onion, tear gas, acrolein and crotonaldehyde from cigarette smoke, etc., cause burning, mechanical and thermal hypersensitivity, cough, eye irritation, sneezing, mucus secretion, and neurogenic inflammation. An increased activity of TRPA1 leads to the emergence of chronic pruritus and allergic dermatitis and is associated with episodic pain syndrome, a hereditary disease characterized by episodes of debilitating pain triggered by stress. TRPA1 is now considered as one of the targets for developing new anti-inflammatory and analgesic drugs. This review summarizes information on the structure, function, and physiological role of this channel, as well as describes known TRPA1 ligands and their significance as therapeutic agents in the treatment of inflammation-associated pain.
KEY WORDS: transient receptor potential ankyrin channel, TRPA1, pain, inflammation, ligands, low-molecular-weight modulators, peptides