Tayler Sheahan

Tayler Sheahan
University of Pittsburgh | Pitt · Department of Neurobiology

Doctor of Philosophy

About

25
Publications
3,146
Reads
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336
Citations
Additional affiliations
January 2018 - present
University of Pittsburgh
Position
  • PostDoc Position
Description
  • Dissecting the neural circuitry of pain, itch, and thermosensation
April 2016 - April 2016
Washington University in St. Louis
Position
  • Lecturer
Description
  • This course introduces undergraduate students to laboratory techniques and discusses the impact of these techniques on biology and medicine. I gave a lecture on calcium imaging and how it has been used to advance our understanding of sensory neurobiology.
April 2014 - present
Washington University in St. Louis
Position
  • WU-CIRTL Program for Future Faculty in STEM Community Member
Description
  • I have participated in a variety of WU-CIRTL workshops, which support developing knowledge of and implementing evidence based active-learning pedagogies, and have applied these pedagogies during my teaching experiences.
Education
August 2008 - May 2012
Marquette University
Field of study
  • Physiological Sciences

Publications

Publications (25)
Article
Full-text available
Allodynia is a state in which pain is elicited by innocuous stimuli. Capsaicin applied to the skin results in an allodynia that extends to a broad region beyond the application site. This sensitization is thought to be mediated by spinal networks; however, we do not have a clear picture of which spinal neurons mediate this phenomenon. To address th...
Article
Remodeling of the nervous system serves as a protective mechanism during abrupt disturbance of neuronal homeostasis. This offers adequate maintenance of overall network activity that includes both synaptic scaling and regulation of intrinsic neuronal excitability in an adaptive process known as homeostatic plasticity. Although alterations in neuron...
Article
Noxious cold sensation is associated with peripheral neuropathies, yet little is known about the mechanisms underlying cold hypersensitivity and pain. Here we identify a role for the kappa opioid receptor (KOR) system in driving cold hypersensitivity. The cold plate assay was used to determine the cold hypersensitivity in wildtype (WT) (C57BL/6J) a...
Article
The spinal cord dorsal horn is a key area for the processing of sensory information such as pain, heat, cold, touch and itch. Our understanding of spinal cord microcircuitry has proved difficult, in part, due to a lack of effective tools to allow identification of dorsal horn neuron populations and how they are connected. A recent technique develop...
Article
The kappa opioid receptor (KOR, encoded by Oprk1) is an extremely attractive target for the treatment of chronic itch. The KOR agonist nalfurafine is used to treat chronic itch associated with kidney and liver disease in Japan, with additional KOR agonists in development for atopic dermatitis and neuropathic itch. Despite the clinical promise of KO...
Article
Noxious cold sensation is commonly associated with peripheral neuropathies, however, there has been limited progress in understanding the mechanism of cold pain. Here we identify a role for kappa opioid receptors (KOR) in driving cold hypersensitivity. First, we show that systemic activation of KOR by U50,488 (U50), increases the latency to jump an...
Article
Full-text available
The neurokinin-1 receptor (NK1R, encoded by Tacr1) is expressed in spinal dorsal horn neurons and has been suggested to mediate itch. However, previous studies relied heavily on neurotoxic ablation of NK1R spinal neurons, which limited further dissection of their function in spinal itch circuitry. Thus, we leveraged a newly developed Tacr1-CreER mo...
Article
Full-text available
Most cutaneous C fibers, including both peptidergic and nonpeptidergic subtypes, are presumed to be nociceptors and respond to noxious input in a graded manner. However, mechanically sensitive, nonpeptidergic C fibers also respond to mechanical input in the innocuous range, so the degree to which they contribute to nociception remains unclear. To a...
Article
Full-text available
The neurokinin-1 receptor (NK1R; encoded by Tacr1) is expressed in spinal dorsal horn neurons and has been suggested to mediate itch in rodents. However, previous studies relied heavily on neurotoxic ablation of NK1R spinal neurons, which limited further dissection of their function in spinal itch circuitry. To address this limitation, we leveraged...
Preprint
Full-text available
Noxious cold sensation is commonly associated with peripheral neuropathies, however, there has been limited progress in understanding the mechanism of cold pain. Transient receptor potential (TRP) A1 channels facilitate the perception of noxious cold at the level of dorsal root ganglia (DRG), where kappa opioid receptors (KOR) are also expressed bu...
Preprint
Full-text available
The neurokinin-1 receptor (NK1R, encoded by Tacr1 ) is expressed in spinal dorsal horn neurons and has been suggested to mediate itch. However, previous studies relied heavily on neurotoxic ablation of NK1R spinal neurons, which limited further dissection of their function in spinal itch circuitry. Thus, we leveraged a newly developed Tacr1 CreER m...
Article
Dissecting the spinal circuitry of pain and itch has been limited by a lack of genetic tools to label discrete subpopulations of spinal neurons. In particular, markers for spinal projection neurons are lacking, and thus the contributions of spinal projection neurons to somatosensation are largely unknown. Currently the only known marker for spinal...
Article
Primary afferents are known to be inhibited by kappa opioid receptor (KOR) signaling. However, the specific types of somatosensory neurons that express KOR remain unclear. Here, using a newly developed KOR-cre knockin allele, viral tracing, single-cell RT-PCR, and ex vivo recordings, we show that KOR is expressed in several populations of primary a...
Article
Chronic itch is a major symptom of cutaneous T cell lymphoma (CTCL). In this issue of Neuron, Han and colleagues (2018) provide evidence that one of the itch mediators in CTCL is an extracellular miRNA that directly activates TRPA1 on sensory neurons.
Article
Full-text available
Injury, inflammation, and nerve damage initiate a wide variety of cellular and molecular processes that culminate in hyperexcitation of sensory nerves, which underlies chronic inflammatory and neuropathic pain. Using be avioral readouts of pain hypersensitivity induced by angiotensin II (Ang II) injection into mouse hindpaws, our study shows that a...
Article
Full-text available
The use of human tissue to validate putative analgesic targets identified in rodents is a promising strategy for improving the historically poor translational record of preclinical pain research. We recently demonstrated that in mouse and human sensory neurons, agonists for metabotropic glutamate receptors 2 and 3 (mGluR2/3) reduce membrane hyperex...
Article
Full-text available
It has been suggested that the lack of rodent behavioral assays that represent the complexities of human pain contributes to the poor translational record of basic pain research findings. Clinically, chronic pain interferes with patient mobility and physical/social activities, and increases anxiety symptoms, in turn negatively impacting quality of...
Preprint
Full-text available
Peripheral nerve damage initiates a complex series of cellular and structural processes that culminate in chronic neuropathic pain. Our study defines local angiotensin signaling via activation of the Angiotensin II (Ang II) type-2 receptor (AT2R) on macrophages as the critical trigger of neuropathic pain. An AT2R-selective antagonist attenuates neu...
Article
Chronic pain afflicts over 100 million Americans and costs the United States $635 billion annually. Despite the major societal and financial burdens of chronic pain, an effective treatment without adverse off-target side effects remains elusive. Given the central side effects such as addiction and abuse related to existing analgesics, identifying p...
Article
Primary cultures of rodent sensory neurons are widely used to investigate the cellular and molecular mechanisms involved in pain, itch, nerve injury and regeneration. However, translation of these preclinical findings may be greatly improved by direct validation in human tissues. We have developed an approach to extract and culture human sensory ne...
Article
Full-text available
Both clinical and animal studies suggest that exercise may be an effective way to manage inflammatory and neuropathic pain conditions. However, existing animal studies commonly use forced exercise paradigms that incorporate varying degrees of stress, which itself can elicit analgesia, and thus may complicate the interpretation of the effects of exe...

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