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Study Published in PAIN Reveals Nicotinamide Riboside is an Effective Tool in Relieving Chemotherapy-Induced Peripheral Neuropathy Induced by a Common Anticancer Agent
Early findings demonstrated in female rats may one day lead to reductions in the neuropathic pain experienced by millions of breast and ovarian cancer patients and survivors.

University of Iowa researchers have published a study in the prestigious Journal of the International Association for the Study of Pain showing that a next-generation form of vitamin B3 called nicotinamide riboside (NR) ameliorates chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) in an animal model. Results from this study suggest that NR may be an effective therapy in relieving CIPN in humans. Access to the study was made available online on February 11, 2017.

Currently, the American Society for Clinical Oncology considers the development of adjunctive therapy for the prevention and relief of CIPN as essential for patient care. This study provides an important proof of concept for the use of NR as a novel therapeutic approach in filling the unmet need for treatments that alleviate CIPN.

Led by Donna Hammond, Ph.D., the research team at the University of Iowa demonstrated that treatment with NR increased blood levels of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) by 50 percent after three weeks of daily administration. NR was able to prevent the development of tactile hypersensitivity induced by the chemotherapeutic paclitaxel and reverse well-established tactile hypersensitivity, while also blunting escape/avoidance behaviors. Furthermore, the prophylactic effect was sustained for at least two weeks after treatment with NR ceased.

The elements that made this study unique

Marta Hamity, Ph.D., the lead study author, indicated that the team embarked on the study based on evidence that suggested that increasing levels of NAD+ in the cells may protect against neuronal injury. The study used female Sprague-Dawley rats, clinically relevant doses of paclitaxel and incorporated measures that quantify the impact of CIPN on quality of life.

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