Pfizer, Icagen recruit Yale scientists for pain collaboration

A pair of scientists at Yale has signed on to collaborate with Pfizer and Icagen to determine if compounds in the developers' portfolio of pain drugs could be used to extinguish the lifelong burning sensation associated with inherited erythromelalgia. They'll be testing whether any of the therapeutics can block Nav1.7 sodium channels, which are responsible for producing impulses in pain-sensing neurons. "Sodium channels are the molecular generators within nerve cells, which produce electrical impulses," said Yale's Stephen G. Waxman. "In patients with IEM, these mutations make Nav1.7 overactive. By blocking these over-active channels, we believe that we potentially can more effectively treat pain in inherited erythromelalgia." Yale release