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      Chronic orofacial pain is estimated to be experienced by up to 26% of the adult population, which greatly decreases life quality. A common complaint of orofacial pain is from mechanical stimuli, although spontaneous pain also occurs in several orofacial pain conditions. Health care providers recommend dietary interventions for the management of cardiovascular disease and diabetes. However, it is possible that diet may also contribute to chronic peripheral pain conditions, as omega-6 fatty acids such as linoleic acid (LA) and arachidonic acid (AA), which are essential polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA), are regulated by dietary intake. However, there is a large gap in knowledge on the role of diet as a risk factor or potential therapy for chronic orofacial pain. The current study characterized changes in sensory neuron signaling after a high omega-6 diet and its contribution to increases in mechanical nociception within the dorsal root ganglia (DRG) and trigeminal ganglia (TG) system. To measure the effect of a high omega-6 diet (H6D) on orofacial nociception, male and female C57 mice were fed standardized diets containing either a high 10% omega-6 diet (Dyets, Inc) or a low 0.5% omega-6 diet (Dyets, Inc) for 8 weeks with weekly monitoring of mechanical nociceptive withdrawal thresholds (n=10/group) using von Frey filaments by a blinded observer. 2-way ANOVA analyzed data. The results demonstrate after 8 weeks of H6D, there is a decrease in mechanical nociceptive thresholds seen in the orofacial region. These findings support the conclusion that a H6D triggers mechanical allodynia in both the DRG and TG systems. Therefore, dietary intervention may represent novel therapeutic approaches for treating chronic pain conditions. NIDCR T-32 DE14318 and R01 NS110948.
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