Andrew Tan, PhD
Research & Publications
Many people with spinal cord injury (SCI) develop neuropathic pain and spasticity within months after injury. Neuropathic pain and spasticity are medical complications after SCI that can severely affect quality of life, interfere with daily activities, and impose a huge economic burden on individuals and society. Unfortunately, despite aggressive efforts, there is still no cure for these conditions after SCI.
The goal of our research is to identify a treatment strategy for clinically intractable pain and spasticity after spinal cord injury (SCI). An emerging concept in SCI pathology is the involvement of a spinal memory mechanism. In classical learning and memory, dendritic spines—micron-sized synaptic structures—have an adaptive role in cortical function and contribute to experience-dependent enhancement of synaptic efficacy. In pathology, however, dendritic spine plasticity appears maladaptive. Dendritic spine morphology (i.e., shape, number, and location) can determine the quality and magnitude of electrical information as it is relayed through neuronal circuits. In a larger sense, spine architecture can influence how the nervous system functions.
Central Nervous System; Craniocerebral Trauma; Spinal Cord Injuries; Therapeutics; Peripheral Nervous System; Neurodegenerative Diseases
- Dendritic Spines and Pain Memory.Benson C, King J, Reimer M, Kauer S, Waxman S, Tan A. Dendritic Spines and Pain Memory. The Neuroscientist 2022, 10738584221138251. PMID: 36461773, DOI: 10.1177/10738584221138251.
- B vitamins for pain following spinal cord traumaTan A. B vitamins for pain following spinal cord trauma European Journal Of Pain 2013, 18: 1-2. PMID: 24318465, DOI: 10.1002/j.1532-2149.2013.00417.x.
- Maladaptive Dendritic Spine Remodeling Contributes to Diabetic Neuropathic PainTan AM, Samad OA, Fischer TZ, Zhao P, Persson AK, Waxman SG. Maladaptive Dendritic Spine Remodeling Contributes to Diabetic Neuropathic Pain Journal Of Neuroscience 2012, 32: 6795-6807. PMID: 22593049, PMCID: PMC6622192, DOI: 10.1523/jneurosci.1017-12.2012.
- Rac1-regulated dendritic spine remodeling contributes to neuropathic pain after peripheral nerve injuryTan AM, Chang YW, Zhao P, Hains BC, Waxman SG. Rac1-regulated dendritic spine remodeling contributes to neuropathic pain after peripheral nerve injury Experimental Neurology 2011, 232: 222-233. PMID: 21963650, DOI: 10.1016/j.expneurol.2011.08.028.
- Spinal cord injury, dendritic spine remodeling, and spinal memory mechanismsTan AM, Waxman SG. Spinal cord injury, dendritic spine remodeling, and spinal memory mechanisms Experimental Neurology 2011, 235: 142-151. PMID: 21925174, DOI: 10.1016/j.expneurol.2011.08.026.
- Unilateral Focal Burn Injury Is Followed by Long-Lasting Bilateral Allodynia and Neuronal Hyperexcitability in Spinal Cord Dorsal HornChang YW, Tan A, Saab C, Waxman S. Unilateral Focal Burn Injury Is Followed by Long-Lasting Bilateral Allodynia and Neuronal Hyperexcitability in Spinal Cord Dorsal Horn Journal Of Pain 2009, 11: 119-130. PMID: 19744891, DOI: 10.1016/j.jpain.2009.06.009.
- Dendritic Spine Remodeling After Spinal Cord Injury Alters Neuronal Signal ProcessingTan AM, Choi JS, Waxman SG, Hains BC. Dendritic Spine Remodeling After Spinal Cord Injury Alters Neuronal Signal Processing Journal Of Neurophysiology 2009, 102: 2396-2409. PMID: 19692517, DOI: 10.1152/jn.00095.2009.
- Neuropathic Pain Memory Is Maintained by Rac1-Regulated Dendritic Spine Remodeling after Spinal Cord InjuryTan AM, Stamboulian S, Chang YW, Zhao P, Hains AB, Waxman SG, Hains BC. Neuropathic Pain Memory Is Maintained by Rac1-Regulated Dendritic Spine Remodeling after Spinal Cord Injury Journal Of Neuroscience 2008, 28: 13173-13183. PMID: 19052208, PMCID: PMC6671613, DOI: 10.1523/jneurosci.3142-08.2008.
- Antibodies against the NG2 proteoglycan promote the regeneration of sensory axons within the dorsal columns of the spinal cord.Tan AM, Colletti M, Rorai AT, Skene JH, Levine JM. Antibodies against the NG2 proteoglycan promote the regeneration of sensory axons within the dorsal columns of the spinal cord. The Journal Of Neuroscience : The Official Journal Of The Society For Neuroscience 2006, 26: 4729-39. PMID: 16672645, DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.3900-05.2006.