Electroacupuncture improves IBS visceral hypersensitivity. - GreenMedInfo Summary
Electroacupuncture Improves IBS Visceral Hypersensitivity by Inhibiting the Activation of Astrocytes in the Medial Thalamus and Anterior Cingulate Cortex.
Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2020 ;2020:2562979. Epub 2020 Jun 12. PMID: 32617101
Objective: To explore whether the effect of electroacupuncture (EA) on visceral hypersensitivity (VH) in rats with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is related to the changes of astrocyte activation in the medial thalamus (MT) and anterior cingulate cortex (ACC).
Method: Male Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into the normal control (NC) group, model control (MC) group, electroacupuncture (EA) group, and fluorocitrate (FCA) group. A model of visceral hypersensitivity was established by neonatal colorectal irritation. In the EA group, needles were inserted into the skin at the Tianshu (ST25) and Shangjuxu (ST37) acupoints, once a day for 7 days. The FCA group received intrathecal injection of FCA on the 1st, 4th, and 7th days. Visceral hypersensitivity was evaluated by the abdominal withdrawal reflex (AWR), and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) mRNA and protein levels in the MT and ACC were detected by real-time PCR, immunohistochemistry, and western blots.
Results: The AWR score in the MC group was significantly higher than in the NC group, and EA and FCA reduced the AWR score of VH rats. GFAP mRNA and protein levels in the MT and ACC of rats in the MC group were significantly increased compared with the NC group. After either electroacupuncture or fluorocitrate, GFAP mRNA and protein levels in the MT and ACC were both clearly reduced.
Conclusion: Electroacupuncture alleviates IBS visceral hypersensitivity by inhibiting the activation of astrocytes in the MT and ACC.