BackgroundNeuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are ligand-gated ion channels. The 42 subtype of nAChRs plays an important role in the mediation of pain and several nicotine-evoked responses. Agonists and partial agonists of 42 nAChRs show efficacy in animal pain models. In addition, the antinociceptive properties of nicotine, a non-selective nAChR agonist with a high affinity for 42 nAChRs, is well-known. There is a growing body of evidence pointing to allosteric modulation of nAChRs as an alternative treatment strategy in experimental pain. Desformylflustrabromine (dFBr) is a positive allosteric modulator (PAM) at 42 nAChRs that enhances agonist responses without activating receptors. We hypothesized that dFBr may enhance nicotine-induced antinociception.