Somatosensory Systems, PainSkin cooling attenuates rat dorsal horn neuronal responses to intracutaneous histamineJinks, Steven L.1; Carstens, E1,2Author Information 1Section of Neurobiology, Physiology and Behavior, University of California, Davis, 1 Shields Avenue, Davis, CA 95616, USA 2Corresponding Author: E. Carstens ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS: This work was supported by grants from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke Grant NS-35778, and the California Tobacco-Related Disease Research Program, # 6RT-0231. Received 9 September 1998; accepted 7 October 1998 NeuroReport: December 21st, 1998 - Volume 9 - Issue 18 - p 4145-4149 Buy Abstract ITCH sensation is reduced by cooling the skin. We tested whether lowering skin temperature attenuates responses of spinal dorsal horn neurons elicited by intracutaneous (i.c.) microinjection of histamine in anesthetized rats. Cooling the skin to 3°C significantly and reproducibly reduced (to a mean of 48%) i.c. histamine-evoked responses in 20 of 24 wide dynamic range-type dorsal horn neurons. Histamine-evoked responses recovered to control levels after rewarming the skin. Assuming that such neurons play a role in signaling itch, depression of their responses during skin cooling may account for the psychophysical observation that skin cooling relieves itch in humans. © 1998 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.