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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Dynamic change in energy metabolism by electroacupuncture stimulation in rats.

The electrical stimulation of meridian points in rats inhibits the withdrawal reflex of the nociceptive tail. Its pain mechanisms are well-documented. Moreover, electroacupuncture (EA) at special abdominal acupoints has been shown to induce a short-term hypoglycemia effect in streptozotocin diabetic rats. The Zusanli and Zhongwan acupoints have been widely used in traditional Chinese medicine to relieve symptoms of diabetes mellitus. It is still unclear whether they can affect extracellular glucose and lactate metabolites at the cellular level. The aim of this study is to evaluate these effects using a rat model for the analysis of extracellular neurochemicals. First, electrical stimulus of 2 ms 2 Hz square pulses (30 minutes) was applied to anesthetized intact rats (n = 7) at the Zusanli points. One and a half hours later, a second electrical stimulus (2 Hz pulses, 30 minutes) was delivered to two of the rats at the same spot. Another two rats received a different stimulation (100 Hz pulses, 30 minutes) at the same location. In the final three rats, a second electrical stimulus of 2 Hz pulses was delivered to non-acupoints. An automated micro-blood sample collector was used to examine the glucose, pyruvate and lactate concentrations. The EA signal has an influence on the biologic process of energy metabolism by mediating dynamic extracellular neurochemical changes. The EA at limb acupoints of the lower limbs induces a decrease in glucose, an increase in lactate metabolites and a decrease in the lactate/glucose ratio. Moreover, the increased lactate/glucose ratio suggests that the cell has an increased anaerobic glucose metabolism.[1]


  1. Dynamic change in energy metabolism by electroacupuncture stimulation in rats. Tseng, C.S., Shen, W.C., Cheng, F.C., Chen, G.W., Li, T.C., Hsieh, C.L. Am. J. Chin. Med. (2005) [Pubmed]
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