The effect of opioid and non-opioid analgesics (painkillers) and local anesthetics in clinical and preclinical settings is investigated in healthy volunteers and patients. Recent studies focus on the anesthetic ketamine. A low dose of this drug lacks anesthetic effects but is a potent analgesic. In patients with CRPS-1 (Complex Regional Pain Syndrome Type 1) ketamine was used successfully. A recent research line focuses on the induction of endogenous analgesia through activation of endogenous pain inhibition. A new development is the treatment of chronic pain with the EPO analog ARA290. ARA290 is currently used in the treatment of neuropathic pain (nerve damage = pain).