PubMed 25012584

Referenced in Channelpedia wiki pages of: none

Automatically associated channels: HCN2 , Nav1 , Nav1.2 , Nav1.3 , Nav1.7 , Nav1.8

Title: Methadone is a local anaesthetic-like inhibitor of neuronal Na+ channels and blocks excitability of mouse peripheral nerves.

Authors: C Stoetzer, K Kistner, T Stüber, M Wirths, V Schulze, T Doll, N Foadi, F Wegner, J Ahrens, A Leffler

Journal, date & volume: Br J Anaesth, 2015 Jan , 114, 110-20

PubMed link:

Opioids enhance and prolong analgesia when applied as adjuvants to local anaesthetics (LAs). A possible molecular mechanism for this property is a direct inhibition of voltage-gated Na(+) channels which was reported for some opioids. Methadone is an effective adjuvant to LA and was recently reported to inhibit cardiac Na(+) channels. Here, we explore and compare LA properties of methadone and bupivacaine on neuronal Na(+) channels, excitability of peripheral nerves, and cell viability.Effects of methadone were explored on compound action potentials (CAP) of isolated mouse saphenous nerves. Patch clamp recordings were performed on Na(+) channels in ND7/23 cells, the α-subunits Nav1.2, Nav1.3, Nav1.7, and Nav1.8, and the hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated channel 2 (HCN2). Cytotoxicity was determined using flow cytometry.Methadone (IC50 86-119 µM) is a state-dependent and unselective blocker on Nav1.2, Nav1.3, Nav1.7, and Nav1.8 with a potency comparable with that of bupivacaine (IC50 177 µM). Both bupivacaine and methadone also inhibit C- and A-fibre CAPs in saphenous nerves in a concentration-dependent manner. Tonic block of Nav1.7 revealed a discrete stereo-selectivity with a higher potency for levomethadone than for dextromethadone. Methadone is also a weak blocker of HCN2 channels. Both methadone and bupivacaine induce a pronounced cytotoxicity at concentrations required for LA effects.Methadone induces typical LA effects by inhibiting Na(+) channels with a potency similar to that of bupivacaine. This hitherto unknown property of methadone might contribute to its high efficacy when applied as an adjuvant to LA.