Background: Fentanyl is often used instead of morphine for the treatment of pain because it has fewer side effects. The metabolism of morphine by glucuronidation is known to be influenced by polymorphisms of the UGT2B7 gene. Some metabolic products of fentanyl are reportedly metabolized by glucuronate conjugation. The genes that are involved in the metabolic pathway of fentanyl may also influence fentanyl sensitivity. We analyzed associations between fentanyl sensitivity and polymorphisms of the UGT2B7 gene to clarify the hereditary determinants of individual differences in fentanyl sensitivity. Results: This study examined whether single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) of the UGT2B7 gene affect cold pain sensitivity and the analgesic effects of fentanyl, evaluated by a standardized pain test and fentanyl requirements in healthy Japanese subjects who underwent uniform surgical procedures. The rs7439366 SNP of UGT2B7 is reportedly associated with the metabolism and analgesic effects of morphine. We found that this SNP is also associated with the analgesic effects of fentanyl in the cold pressor-induced pain test. It suggested that the C allele of the rs7439366 SNP may enhance analgesic efficacy. Two SNPs of UGT2B7, rs4587017 and rs1002849, were also found to be novel SNPs that may influence the analgesic effects of fentanyl in the cold pressor-induced pain test. Conclusions: Fentanyl sensitivity for cold pressor-induced pain was associated with the rs7439366, rs4587017, and rs1002849 SNPs of the UGT2B7 gene. Our findings may provide valuable information for achieving satisfactory pain control and open to new avenues for personalized pain treatment.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Medicine
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
- Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine