This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

12 Nov 2012

Human experimental pain models 'should be used in drug development'

A review suggests that human experimental pain models could be used to accurately predict the efficacy of possible new analgesics.

Testing experimental painkillers on humans should be a routine part of drug development, experts have claimed.
At present, drugs are typically tested on animal models and in human trials, but it is not possible to measure pain directly, making it hard to find effective new drugs.

Researchers in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, say that an effective new way to test painkillers on human volunteers could be to inflict carefully controlled painful stimuli and see how well the drug reduces the feeling of pain.

"We thought that if a pain-relieving drug was effective in a particular experimental pain model and also in a specific type of clinical pain, then the experimental model should be predictive for the particular clinical setting," said Dr Jorn Lotsch, from the Institute of Clinical Pharmacology at the Goethe-University.

Writing about their review findings in the British Journal of Pharmacology, the researchers claim that human experimental pain models are good at predicting how well a drug will work in patients.

However, a number of different experimental pain models would be needed to provide accurate predictions in different clinical settings.

Co-author Bruno Georg Oertel concluded: "Not using these pain models in drug development seems to be unjustified - in fact they should be used routinely in drug development programmes

Related News