Gary R. Strichartz, PhD
Professor, Department of Anesthesia, Harvard Medical School
Director, Pain Research Center, Brigham And Women's Hospital
DF/HCC Program AffiliationPalliative Care
My laboratory investigates the molcules and mechanisms that contribute to abnormal pain from cancer, particularly metastases of cancer into bony tissue such as the spinal cord. Our major focus is on the naturally occurring peptide endothelin-1 (ET-1), which is synthesized and secreted by prostate tumor cells and which is known to cause pain directly as well as to sensitize the nervous system to other, normally innocuous stimuli, such as light touch. We seek to determine which receptors for ET-1, located on different cells in nerve tissues, skin and bones, are important for the activation of the pain-sensing neurons. I am personally also interested in the neurobiology of suffering, its physiological and neurochemical mechanisms, and in developing pharmacological and drug-free methods to reduce such suffering, tested through objective measurements.
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