Pain Relief is important for cancer patients because metastatic bone pain is the single most common form of cancer pain and cancer induced bone pain (CIBP) accounts for 30 to 50 percent of cancer pain and for 75 to 90 percent of all late stage cancer patients. In a new study reported in the journal Pain researchers reported discovering a key molecular pathway that drives cancer related bone pain and a potential solution.

In previous work the researcher discovered the pain pathway (molecular series of events leading to pain) including the S1PR1 (sphingosine 1 phosphate receptor subtype 1) that could be modulated to block and reverse pain using a drug already on the market. In the current animal study of breast cancer that had metastasized to the femur they observed spinal cord changes to key pathways that suggested increases in spjingosine 1-phosphate are a key component of developing pain and blocking the signal limits pain. Thus, targeting S1PR1 mitigates pain and neuroinflammation and identifies S1PR1 as a potential therapeutic target alone or as a secondary therapy to address cancer-induced bone pain.