Could Manipulating a Gene End Pain?
This is where it hurts. Scientists are working on a clinical trial for drugs that would essentially block the transmission of pain signals between nerve cells without harmful side effects. Over 25 million American adults say they deal with chronic pain, and nearly 2 million are addicted to painkillers. Researchers believe that by regulating Nav1.7, a channel that allows charged sodium ions to transmit pain signals, they can block those signals, and most importantly, offer relief to sufferers of “man on fire” syndrome — a condition as painful as it sounds.