B4454 - TRPA1 in infantile colic - 20/11/2023

B number: 
Principal applicant name: 
Laurent FERRIER | Nestlé Research (Switzerland)
Eleonora Porcu
Title of project: 
TRPA1 in infantile colic
Proposal summary: 

Infantile colic is a common condition that affects babies within the first few months of life. It is characterized by episodes of excessive crying, often occurring in the late afternoon or evening. Babies with colic may cry inconsolably for extended periods, typically following "the rule of three" : at least three hours a day, three days a week, for three weeks or more . The crying episodes can be intense and may be accompanied by signs of discomfort, such as clenched fists, arched back, and a flushed face. It is important to note that colic is not caused by anything the parents have done or by any underlying medical condition.

The exact cause of colic is unknown, but it is believed to be related to the baby's immature digestive system, sensitivity to stimulation, or difficulty in self-soothing. Our aim here is to determine if a particular receptor called TRPA1 could be involved in the genesis of the pain.

Impact of research: 
Infantile colic is a frequent condition characterized with abdominal pain triggering long periods of crying with difficulty to soothe. This is difficult to manage for parents who may feel distraught. It is indeed the first risk factor for the shaken baby syndrome. The etiology of colic remains largely unknown as it impacts both genders, caesarean- or vaginally-born infants, and breastfed as well as formula-fed infants. Our hypothesis is that the receptor TRPA1 represents a good candidate to generate pain symptoms in colicky infants. We therefore would like to test the association between TRPA1 SNPs and colicky phenotype. This would allow to better understand the reason why infants may be more sensitive to painful stimuli. Ultimately, these findings could lead to develop solutions targeting TRPA1 receptor.
Date proposal received: 
Wednesday, 1 November, 2023
Date proposal approved: 
Friday, 10 November, 2023
Physiology, Gastrointestinal, Statistical methods, Genetics