(HealthDay News) – Genetic polymorphisms correlate with pain following motor vehicle collisions (MVCs), according to two studies presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Anesthesiologists, held from Oct 13–17 in Washington, DC.

Yawar J Qadri, MD, PhD, from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, and colleagues examined whether genetic variants in the gene encoding dopamine receptor 2 correlate with the severity of reported pain after exposure to minor trauma in a cohort of 948 patients who presented to the emergency department after MVCs. The researchers found that, after adjustment for multiple comparisons, rs6276 was significantly associated with overall pain intensity observed in the emergency department. Patients homozygous for the AA genotype at rs6276 reported an overall pain intensity of 5.3±0.2, while those with AG or GG genotypes reported a significantly higher overall pain intensity of 5.8±0.2.

In a second study, Jennifer Smith, also from the University of North Carolina, and colleagues examined the association between variants in FK506 binding protein 5, a chaperone protein for the glucocorticoid receptor, and the presence of moderate-to-severe neck pain (MSNP) and persistent pain, assessed as the total body areas with pain (TBAWP), six weeks after minor MVCs. For the 838 genotyped patients, the researchers found that nine single nucleotide polymorphisms were significantly associated with MSNP and TBAWP after adjustment. The strongest associations were seen for rs4713904, rs9394309, and rs9380526.

“Our study is the first to identify a genetic risk factor for persistent pain after an MVC, and contributes further evidence that persistent pain after a collision has a neurobiological basis,” a coauthor said in a statement.

Abstract – Qadri
Abstract – Smith
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