Publications by authors named "Donald K Jessup"

2 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Chemotherapy induced gastrointestinal toxicities.

Adv Cancer Res 2022 21;155:131-166. Epub 2022 Mar 21.

Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, School of Medicine, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA, United States.

Chemotherapy-induced gastrointestinal dysfunction is a common occurrence associated with many different classes of chemotherapeutic agents. Gastrointestinal toxicity includes mucositis, diarrhea, and constipation, and can often be a dose-limiting complication, induce cessation of treatment and could be life threatening. The gastrointestinal epithelium is rich in rapidly dividing cells and hence is a prime target for chemotherapeutic drugs. The incidence of gastrointestinal toxicity, including diarrhea and mucositis, is extremely high for a wide array of chemotherapeutic and radiation regimens. In fact, 60%-100% of patients on high-dose chemotherapy suffer from gastrointestinal side effects. Unfortunately, treatment options are limited, and therapy is often restricted to palliative care. Therefore, there is a great unmet therapeutic need for preventing and treating chemotherapy-induced gastrointestinal toxicities in the clinic. In this review, we discuss our current understanding of the mechanisms underlying chemotherapy-induced diarrhea and mucositis, and emerging mechanisms involving the enteric nervous system, smooth muscle cells and enteric immune cells. Recent evidence has also implicated gut dysbiosis in the pathogenesis of not only chemotherapy-induced mucositis and diarrhea, but also chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy. Oxidative stress induced by chemotherapeutic agents results in post-translational modification of ion channels altering neuronal excitability. Thus, investigating how chemotherapy-induced changes in the gut- microbiome axis may lead to gut-related toxicities will be critical in the discovery of new drug targets for mitigating adverse gastrointestinal effects associated with chemotherapy treatment.
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July 2022

Sex-specific role for serotonin 5-HT receptor in modulation of opioid-induced antinociception and reward in mice.

Neuropharmacology 2022 05 17;209:108988. Epub 2022 Feb 17.

Department of Physiology and Biophysics, Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine, Richmond, VA, 23298, USA. Electronic address:

Opioids are among the most effective analgesics and the mainstay of pain management. However, concerns about safety and abuse liability have challenged their widespread use by the medical community. Opioid-sparing therapies include drugs that in combination with opioids have the ability to enhance analgesia while decreasing opioid requirement as well as their side effects. Sex differences in antinociceptive responses to opioids have received increasing attention in recent years. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying sex differences related to opioid-sparing adjuncts remain largely unexplored. Using warm water tail-withdrawal as a mouse model of acute thermal nociception, our data suggest that adjunctive administration of the serotonin 5-HT receptor (5-HTR) antagonist volinanserin dose-dependently enhanced potency of the opioid analgesic oxycodone in male, but not female, mice. This antinociceptive-like response induced by oxycodone was also augmented in 5-HTR knockout (5-HTR) male, but not female mice; an effect that was reversed by Cre-loxP-mediated selective expression of 5-HTR in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons of 5-HTR littermates. Pharmacological inhibition with volinanserin or genetic deletion in 5-HTR animals potentiated the ability of oxycodone to reduce DRG excitability in male mice. Adjunctive volinanserin did not affect oxycodone-induced conditioned place preference (CPP), whereas it reduced oxycodone-induced locomotor sensitization in male and female mice. Together, these results suggest that adjunctive volinanserin augments opioid-induced antinociception, but not abuse-related behavior, through a sex-specific signaling crosstalk mechanism that requires 5-HTR expression in mouse DRG neurons. Ultimately, our results may pave the way for the clinical evaluation of volinanserin as a potential sex-specific opioid adjuvant.
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May 2022