Relieving painful bladder syndrome

Relief could be on the way for people suffering chronic cystitis, with new research aiming for new therapies and improved diagnosis.

Interstitial cystitis - also called painful bladder syndrome - is a debilitating chronic bladder disorder characterised by lower urinary tract symptoms, including severe urgency, frequency and pain.  

Painful bladder syndrome has a significant impact on quality of life, and early symptoms are present in up to 13 per cent of the population, with higher prevalence in women. Current therapies are far from satisfactory due to limited effectiveness and significant side effects. 

In patients suffering from interstitial cystitis, inflammation causes a profound increase in sensory signalling from the bladder. With the help of a Flinders Foundation Health Seed Grant, Associate Professor Vladimir Zagorodnyuk will conduct a study to establish which sensory neurons become overexcited in cases of interstitial cystitis.  

His research will lead to new therapies and help improve diagnostic methods, offering huge benefits for people suffering from chronic cystitis.

Our study will lead to a new visceral pain therapies targeting the root cause of pain - sensory nerve endings in the bladder wall - and will also help improve diagnostic methods for interstitial cystitis.


Project title: Critical role of transient receptor potential channels in cystitis-induced hypersensitivity of sensory neurons. 

Lead researcher: Associate Professor Vladimir Zagorodnyuk

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