Journal Club Meeting February 10, 2015

Location:  Dental Sciences Building, Room D7-11


Phantom pain after arm amputation is widely believed to arise from maladaptive cortical reorganization, triggered by loss of sensory input (Flor et al.). Recent evidence, however, suggests that chronic phantom pain experience drives plasticity by maintaining local cortical representations and disrupting inter-regional connectivity (see attached). Whereas the loss of sensory input is generally characterized by structural and functional degeneration in the deprived sensorimotor cortex, the experience of persistent pain is associated with preserved structure and functional organization in the former hand area. In contrast to the maladaptive model, emerging evidence suggests that cortical plasticity associated with phantom pain is driven by powerful and long-lasting subjective sensory experience, such as triggered by nociceptive or top–down inputs (see attached). These new data suggest that the link between phantom pain and brain organization should be revisited. We will visit this topic in a discussion that will be led by Dr. Steve Coombes.

I want to remind everyone that pain journal club is a great educational opportunity that provides something for all who attend. I encourage all students, trainees and faculty to attend and present papers in their area of interest. I guarantee you that no matter what the topic there will always be an interesting discussion……so join us for what promises to be another great year with a little something for everyone.

Please circulate to those you think might be interested in these topics!!

Hope to see everyone next week!!

Flor et al. – 1995 – phantom-lim pain
Frey et al. – 2009 – Chronically deafferented sensory cortex
Makin et al. – 2013 – Phantom pain