Serum Biomarkers of Nociceptive and Neuropathic Pain in Chronic Pancreatitis

Jami L. Saloman, Yan Li, Kimberly Stello, Wenhao Li, Shuang Li, Anna Evans Phillips, Kristen Hall, Evan L. Fogel, Santhi Swaroop Vege, Liang Li, Dana K. Andersen, William E. Fisher, Christopher E. Forsmark, Phil A. Hart, Stephen J. Pandol, Walter G. Park, Mark D. Topazian, Stephen K. Van Den Eeden, Jose Serrano, Darwin L. ConwellDhiraj Yadav

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Debilitating abdominal pain is a common symptom affecting most patients with chronic pancreatitis (CP). There are multiple underlying mechanisms that contribute to CP-related pain, which makes successful treatment difficult. The identification of biomarkers for subtypes of pain could provide viable targets for nonopioid interventions and the development of mechanistic approaches to pain management in CP. Nineteen inflammation- and nociception-associated proteins were measured in serum collected from 358 subjects with definite CP enrolled in PROspective Evaluation of Chronic Pancreatitis for EpidEmiologic and Translational StuDies, a prospective observational study of pancreatitis in US adult subjects. First, serum levels of putative biomarkers were compared between CP subjects with and without pain. Only platelet-derived growth factor B (PDGF-B) stood out, with levels significantly higher in the CP pain group as compared to subjects with no pain. Subjects with pain were then stratified into 4 pain subtypes (Neuropathic, Nociceptive, Mixed, and Unclassified). A comparison of putative biomarker concentration among 5 groups (no pain and 4 pain subtypes) identified unique proteins that were correlated with pain subtypes. Serum transforming growth factor beta 1 (TGFβ1) level was significantly higher in the Nociceptive pain group compared to the No pain group, suggesting that TGFβ1 may be a biomarker for nociceptive pain. The Neuropathic pain only group was too small to detect statistical differences. However, glycoprotein 130 (GP130), a coreceptor for interleukin 6, was significantly higher in the Mixed pain group compared to the groups lacking a neuropathic pain component. These data suggest that GP130 may be a biomarker for neuropathic pain in CP. Perspective: Serum TGFβ1 and GP130 may be biomarkers for nociceptive and neuropathic CP pain, respectively. Preclinical data suggest inhibiting TGFβ1 or GP130 reduces CP pain in rodent models, indicating that additional translational and clinical studies may be warranted to develop a precision medicine approach to the management of pain in CP.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2199-2210
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Pain
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 United States Association for the Study of Pain, Inc.


  • Glycoprotein 130
  • PROCEED Study
  • Platelet-derived growth factor B
  • Transforming growth factor beta 1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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