The transient receptor potential melastatin-8 (TRPM8) is a cold and menthol receptor located in the sensory ganglia. Immunohistochemistry for TRPM8 was performed on oral and craniofacial structures of the rat. TRPM8-immunoreactive (-IR) nerve fibers were detected in the oral mucous membrane. In the gingiva, TRPM8-IR nerve fibers were abundant beneath and within crestal and outer epithelia. Such nerve fibers were also common beneath and within taste buds in the incisive papilla. In addition, TRPM8-immunoreactivity was expressed by some taste bud cells in the papilla. Lips, periodontal ligaments and salivary glands as well as masticatory muscles and temporomandibular joints were mostly devoid of TRPM8-IR nerve fibers. A double immunofluorescence study indicated different distribution patterns of nerve fibers containing TRPM8 and calcitonin gene-related peptide in oral and craniofacial tissues. Retrograde tracing method also indicated that TRPM8-IR nerve fibers in the gingiva and incisive papilla originate from small sensory neurons in the trigeminal ganglion. TRPM8 may be associated with cool, cold nociceptive (<around 25 °C) and chemoreceptive transmission in the oral mucosa.
- Incisive papilla
- Transient receptor potential melastatin-8
- Trigeminal ganglion
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental Biology