Arthritis-associated inflammatory pain represents a serious medical problem worldwide. Current treatments for arthritis pain are not very effective and can cause unwanted side effects.

Resolvins, including resolvin D and resolvin E series, are a family of novel endogenous lipid mediators derived from Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids. Resolvins display potent anti-inflammatory and pro-resolution actions in animal models of inflammation.
Emerging evidence also points to a potent anti-hyperalgesic role of resolvins in animal models of inflammatory pain. This study by Lima-Garcia et al demonstrated that systemic delivery of the precursor of resolvin D series, 17(R)HDoHE and its product aspirin-triggered resolvin D1 (AT-RvD1), at very low doses (1 µg/kg), reduced inflammatory pain in an adjuvant-induced arthritis model. Of interest 17(R)HDoHE reduced joint stiffness but not paw and joint edema.

Given the potency and safety profile, resolvins may represent a new class of analgesics for treating inflammatory pain associated with arthritis.