Researchers say they have found a link in the nerve that could give an insight on what causes itching and why scratching relieves itching.

In a study conducted on mice, researchers found that the nerve cells that transfer heat pain react less when the cells lose capacity to signal. But what they found was the mice started to itch continuously.

The research was done by a team led by Professor Klas Kullander at the Department of Neuroscience, which could lead to new ways of treating itching among patients.

"These findings link together pain from a burn with regulating sensitivity to itching, which was highly surprising and interesting," said Klas Kullander.

Medical practioners have found that it is difficult to treat extreme itching. Itching also is very unpleasant to patients and it is common for patients to itch after they undergo an operation or suffer burns.

"In the long run, and with the help of more research, we will hopefully be able to fully elucidate what nerve fibers conduct the itching itself, and then we will be able to extinguish the itch at the source," says Klas Kullander.