A membrane-delimited N-myristoylated CRMP2 peptide aptamer inhibits CaV2.2 trafficking and reverses inflammatory and postoperative pain behaviors

Liberty François-Moutal, Yue Wang, Aubin Moutal, Karissa E. Cottier, Ohannes K. Melemedjian, Xiaofang Yang, Yuying Wang, Weina Ju, Tally M. Largent-Milnes, May Khanna, Todd W. Vanderah, Rajesh Khanna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


Targeting proteins within the N-type voltage-gated calcium channel (CaV2.2) complex has proven to be an effective strategy for developing novel pain therapeutics. We describe a novel peptide aptamer derived from the collapsin response mediator protein 2 (CRMP2), a CaV2.2-regulatory protein. Addition of a 14-carbon myristate group to the peptide (myr-tat-CBD3) tethered it to the membrane of primary sensory neurons near surface CaV2.2. Pull-down studies demonstrated that myr-tat-CBD3 peptide interfered with the CRMP2-CaV2.2 interaction. Quantitative confocal immunofluorescence revealed a pronounced reduction of CaV2.2 trafficking after myr-tat-CBD3 treatment and increased efficiency in disrupting CRMP2-CaV2.2 colocalization compared with peptide tat-CBD3. Consequently, myr-tat-CBD3 inhibited depolarization-induced calcium influx in sensory neurons. Voltage clamp electrophysiology experiments revealed a reduction of Ca2+, but not Na+, currents in sensory neurons after myr-tat-CBD3 exposure. Current clamp electrophysiology experiments demonstrated a reduction in excitability of small-diameter dorsal root ganglion neurons after exposure to myr-tat-CBD3. Myr-tat-CBD3 was effective in significantly attenuating carrageenan-induced thermal hypersensitivity and reversing thermal hypersensitivity induced by a surgical incision of the plantar surface of the rat hind paw, a model of postoperative pain. These effects are compared with those of tat-CBD3-the nonmyristoylated tat-conjugated CRMP2 peptide as well as scrambled versions of CBD3 and CBD3-lacking control peptides. Our results demonstrate that the myristoyl tag enhances intracellular delivery and local concentration of the CRMP2 peptide aptamer near membrane-delimited calcium channels resulting in pronounced interference with the calcium channel complex, superior suppression of calcium influx, and better antinociceptive potential.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1247-1264
Number of pages18
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2015


  • CRMP2
  • CaV2.2
  • Calcium imaging
  • Conditioned place preference
  • GPMVs
  • Inflammatory pain
  • N-myristoylated peptide
  • Postoperative pain
  • Trafficking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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