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The utility of single nucleotide DNA variations as predictors of postoperative pain

Objectives: Genetic variation is an important contributor to postsurgical pain and thereby analgesia requirements. A description of the potential predictive power of genetic variants in pain should instruct improvements in pain management postoperatively. We set out to examine whether a set of genetic variants in pain related genes would show any association with actual pain outcomes in a typical surgical population. Methods: A candidate gene study was carried out in 135 surgical patients with 12 DNA variants (single nucleotide polymorphisms or ‘SNPs’) in known or putative pain pathway genes to detect associations with postoperative pain - measured by a verbal rating score (VRS) and patient-controlled analgesia (PCA) usage rate. Standard PCR based molecular biology approaches were used. Results: At 20-24h after surgery, patients with the 1032G/1032G variant pair for the A1032G variant of the potassium channel KCNJ6 gene had a slightly higher median VRS than those with 1032A/1032A or 1032A/1032G pairs (p=0.04; dominant genetic model). This small difference was most apparent in the orthopaedic surgery patients where the 1032G/1032G pair associated with VRS (median(interquartile range)) of 5(4-6) vs. 3(0.5-4) in 1032A/1032A or 1032A/1032G groups. For PCA, patients with 3435C/3435C or 3435C/3435T pairs for ATPdependent efflux pump gene ABCB1 variant C3435T used PCA at a considerably higher rate of 0.89(0.07-1.66) mg.h-1 compared with just 0.11 (0-0.52) mg.h-1 for the 3435T/3435T pair (p=0.03; dominant model). A significantly higher usage rate was also detected for opioid receptor OPRM1 variant IVS2-691 with usage of 0.77(0.01-1.56) mg.h-1 for the IVS2C/IVS2C or IVS2C/IVS2G group vs. 0.24(0-1.26) mg.h-1 in the IVS2G/IVS2G group (p=0.04; recessive model). Conclusion: While this study has identified some significant statistical associations the potential utility of the studied DNA variants in prediction of postoperative pain and patient-controlled opioid analgesia requirements appears to be quite limited at present.
Journal Article
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Jacobson, G. M., Law, C. J., Johnston, H., Chaddock, M., Kluger, M., Cursons, R. T., & Sleigh, J. W. (2014). The utility of single nucleotide DNA variations as predictors of postoperative pain. Journal of Anaesthesia & Clinical Research, 5(4), 1–8. http://doi.org/10.4172/2155-6148.1000401
© 2014 Jacobson GM, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.