Synergistic Antinociceptive Activity of Tramadol/Acetaminophen Combination Mediated by μ-Opioid Receptors.Biol Pharm Bull. 2020; 43(7):1128-1134.BP
We investigated whether tramadol could suppress both neuropathic and inflammatory pain in mice at the same dose level. We also examined the effects of drugs metabolized by glucuronidase, such as acetaminophen (ACAP), indomethacin, probenecid, and valproate, on the antinociceptive activity of tramadol. The administration of 5.6 or 10 mg/kg tramadol suppressed cuff-induced mechanical allodynia, but 10 mg/kg tramadol did not suppress complete Freund's adjuvant (CFA)-induced mechanical allodynia. Although neither tramadol (10 mg/kg) nor ACAP (100 mg/kg) alone produced an antinociceptive effect, their combination suppressed CFA-induced mechanical allodynia. Moreover, pretreatment naloxone, an opioid receptor antagonist, significantly attenuated the antinociceptive effects induced by the combination of tramadol and ACAP and slowed gastrointestinal transit. Similar to ACAP, the combination of tramadol and probenecid or valproate, which has the potential to inhibit uridine 5'-diphosphate (UDP)-glucuronosyltransferase (UGT), also suppressed the CFA-induced mechanical allodynia and slowed gastrointestinal transit. We concluded that tramadol was more beneficial for the treatment of neuropathic pain than inflammatory pain. Furthermore, the antinociceptive effects of the tramadol and ACAP combination were mediated by the μ-opioid receptor, and were thought to be related, at least in part, to the accumulation of the active metabolite, M1.