***Acupuncture inhibits microglial activation and inflammatory events in the MPTP-induced mouse model

Acupuncture inhibits microglial activation and inflammatory events in the MPTP-induced mouse model.

Brain Research, Volume 1131, 2 February 2007, Pages 211-219   2007 Feb 2

Jun Mo Kanga, b, Hi Joon Parka, Yeong Gon Choib, Il Hwan Choea, Jae Hyun Parka, b, Yong Sik Kimc, Sabina Lima, b, ,
a Department of Meridian and Acupoints, College of Korean Medicine, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, South Korea
b WHO Collaborating Centre for Traditional Medicine, East-West Medical Research Institute, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, South Korea
c Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, Seoul National University, Seoul, South Korea

Corresponding author. Department of Meridian and Acupoints, College of Korean Medicine, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, South Korea. Fax: +82 2 961 7831.

 Accepted 27 October 2006, Available online 14 December 2006

Abstract

Using a mouse model of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP)-induced Parkinson’s disease (PD), this study investigated on the neuroprotective effects of acupuncture by examining whether acupuncture contributed to inhibiting microglial activation and inflammatory events.

C57BL/6 mice were treated with MPTP (30 mg/kg, i.p.) for 5 consecutive days. Acupuncture was then applied to acupoints Yanglingquan (GB34) and Taichong (LR3) starting 2 h after the first MPTP administration and then at 48 h intervals until the mice were sacrificed for analyses at 1, 3, and 7 days after the last MPTP injection.

These experiments demonstrated that acupuncture inhibited the decreased of the tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) immunoreactivity (IR) and generated a neuroprotective effects in the striatum (ST) and the substantia nigra (SN) on days 1, 3, and 7 post-MPTP injections.

Acupuncture attenuated the increase of macrophage antigen complex-1 (MAC-1), a marker of microglial activation, at 1 and 3 days and reduced the increases in cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) expression on days 1, 3, and 7. In MPTP group, striatal dopamine (DA) was measured by 46% at 7 days, whereas DA in the acupuncture group was 78%.

On the basis of these results, we suggest that acupuncture could be used as a neuroprotective intervention for the purpose of inhibiting microglial activation and inflammatory events in PD.

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