The present study was undertaken to elucidate the desensitization of cutaneous receptors and the conduction block of the afferent nerves induced by direct application of allyl isotheocyanate (mustard oil) to the receptive field (RF) or onto the afferent nerve, respectively. Dorsal horn cell responses to mechanical stimulations of RF were completely suppressed when mustard oil was applied to either the afferent nerve or the whole area of RF. C-fiber responses of dorsal horn cells were more susceptive to mustard oil than A-fiber activities. This was confirmed by the experiment in which the compound action potentials recorded from rat tibial nerve before and after topical application of mustard oil were compared. The higher the concentration of mustard oil and the longer the application time, the more powerful desensitization or conduction block was induced. From the results of the present study, it is suggested that the desensitization of the afferent fiber and sensory receptors induced by mustard oil results mainly from the conduction block of C-fiber in the primary afferent nerve.