Current Pain and Headache Reports

, Volume 14, Issue 3, pp 203–212

Phenotyping and Genotyping Neuropathic Pain


DOI: 10.1007/s11916-010-0110-1

Cite this article as:
Belfer, I. & Dai, F. Curr Pain Headache Rep (2010) 14: 203. doi:10.1007/s11916-010-0110-1


Despite ongoing efforts, neither effective treatments nor mechanistic understanding of the pathogenesis of human neuropathic pain exists. Genetic association studies may point to the novel molecules that mediate neuropathic pain, facilitating its understanding and management. Several studies used a candidate gene approach to elucidate genetic contribution to neuropathic pain phenotypes; however, the data is limited and inconsistent. Possible reasons include: sample heterogeneity, underpowered study design, population admixture, poor phenotyping, genotyping errors, and statistical analytical mistakes. This article summarizes and discusses current strategies to optimize population-based association studies of human neuropathic pain focusing on principles of measuring neuropathic pain phenotypes and genotyping techniques. We also consider advantages and challenges of study designs and statistical analyses.


GeneticAssociationNeuropathic painPhenotypePsychosocialPsychophysical

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Molecular Epidemiology of Pain Program, Department of AnesthesiologyUniversity of PittsburghPittsburghUSA
  2. 2.Department of Human GeneticsUniversity of PittsburghPittsburghUSA
  3. 3.Department of BiostatisticsUniversity of PittsburghPittsburghUSA
  4. 4.Departments of Anesthesiology & Human Genetics, Molecular Epidemiology of Pain ProgramUniversity of PittsburghPittsburghUSA