Segmental Spinal Nerve Ligation Model of Neuropathic Pain

  • Jin Mo Chung
  • Hee Kee Kim
  • Kyungsoon Chung
Part of the Methods in Molecular Medicine book series (MIMM, volume 99)


Since its introduction in 1992, the spinal nerve ligation (SNL) model of neuropathic pain has been widely used for various investigative works on neuropathic pain mechanisms as well as in screening tests for the development of new analgesic drugs. This model was developed by tightly ligating one (L5) or two (L5 and L6) segmental spinal nerves in the rat. The operation results in long-lasting behavioral signs of mechanical allodynia, heat hyperalgesia, cold allodynia, and ongoing pain. In the process of widespread usage, however, many different variations of the SNL model have been produced, either intentionally or unintentionally, by different investigators. Although the factors that cause these variations themselves are interesting and important topics to be studied, the pain mechanisms involved in these variations are likely different from the original model. Therefore, this chapter describes, in detail, the method for producing the spinal nerve ligation model that will minimally induce potential factors that may contribute to these variations. It is hoped that this description will help many investigators to produce a consistent animal model with uniform pathophysiological mechanisms.

Key Words

Animal model mechanical allodynia pain model peripheral nerve injury peripheral neuropathy 


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Copyright information

© Humana Press Inc. 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jin Mo Chung
    • 1
    • 2
  • Hee Kee Kim
    • 1
    • 2
  • Kyungsoon Chung
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Marine Biomedical InstituteUniversity of Texas Medical BranchGalveston
  2. 2.Department of Anatomy and NeurosciencesUniversity of Texas Medical BranchGalveston

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