Oxaliplatin-induced neurotoxicity involves TRPM8 in the mechanism of acute hypersensitivity to cold sensation

Toru Kono, Machiko Satomi, Manabu Suno, Norihisa Kimura, Hirotaka Yamazaki, Hiroyuki Furukawa, Kazuo Matsubara

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33 Citations (Scopus)


Oxaliplatin-induced peripheral neurotoxicity (OPN) is commonly associated with peripheral hypersensitivity to cold sensations (CS) but the mechanism is unknown. We hypothesized that the transient receptor potential melastatin 8 (TRPM8), a putative cold andmenthol receptor, contributes to oxaliplatin cold hypersensitivity. To determine whether the TRPM8 is involved in acuteOPN, varying concentrations of menthol were topically applied to the tongues of healthy subjects (n = 40) and colorectal cancer patients (n = 36) before and after oxaliplatin administration. The minimumconcentration of menthol to evoke CS at thementhol application sitewas determined as theCS detection threshold (CDT). In healthy subjects, themeanCDT was 0.068. Sex and age differenceswere not found in theCDT. In advanced colorectal cancer patients, the mean CDT significantly decreased from 0.067% to 0.028% (P = 0.0039) after the first course of oxaliplatin infusions, and this marked CS occurred in patients who had grade 1 or less neurotoxicity, and grade 2 neurotoxicity, but not in those with grade 3 neurotoxicity. Further, the mean baseline CDT in oxaliplatintreated patients was significantly higher than that of chemotherapy-naïve patients and healthy subjects (0.151% vs. 0.066%, P=0.0225), suggesting that acute sensory changes may be concealed by progressive abnormalities in sensory axons in severe neurotoxicity, and that TRPM8 is subject to desensitization on repeat stimulation. Our study demonstrates the feasibility of undertaking CDT test in a clinical setting to facilitate the identification of early neurotoxicity. Moreover, our results indicate potential TRPM8 involvement in acute OPN.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)68-73
Number of pages6
JournalBrain and Behavior
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Menthol
  • Neurotoxicity
  • Oxaliplatin
  • Transient receptor potential melastatin 8

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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