Combined Traditional And Modern Medicine
Copyright ©The Author(s) 1999. Published by Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. All rights reserved.
World J Gastroenterol. Dec 15, 1999; 5(6): 515-517
Published online Dec 15, 1999. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v5.i6.515
Study of the mechanisms of acupuncture and moxibustion treatment for ulcerative colitis rats in view of the gene expression of cytokines
Huan-Gan Wu, Li-Bin Zhou, Ying-Ying Pan, Cheng Huang, Han-Ping Chen, Zheng Shi, Xue-Gui Hua
Huan-Gan Wu, Li-Bin Zhou, Ying-Ying Pan, Cheng Huang, Han-Ping Chen, Zheng Shi, Xue-Gui Hua, Shanghai Institute of Acupuncture-Moxibustion and Meridians, Shanghai 200030, China
Huan-Gan Wu, male, born on 1956-11-21 in Xianju County, Zhejiang Province, graduated from Zhejiang College of Traditional Chinese Medicine, with Master Degree in 1990, and from Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medic ine with Doctoral Degree in 1993; now professor, director, majoring the research of acupuncture-moxibustion immunity, having 26 papers published.
Author contributions: All authors contributed equally to the work.
Supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.39670899.
Correspondence to: Prof. Huan-Gan Wu, Shanghai Institute of Acupuncture-Moxibustion and Meridians, 650 South Wan Ping Road, Shanghai 200030, China
Telephone: +86-21-64395972
Received: May 23, 1999
Revised: June 30, 1999
Accepted: July 13, 1999
Published online: December 15, 1999

AIM: To observe the effect of acupuncture and moxibustion on the expression of IL-1β and IL-6 mRNA in ulcerative colitis rats.

METHODS: The SD rat ulcerative colitis model was created by immunological method associated with local stimulation. Colonic mucosa was prepared from human fresh surgical colonic specimens, homogenized by adding appropriate amount of normal saline and centrifuged at 3000 r/min. The supernatant was collected for measurement of protein conentration and then mixed with Freund adjuvant. This antigen fluid was first injected into the plantae of the model group rats, and then into their plantae, dorsa, inguina and abdominal cavities (no Freund adjuvant for the last injection) again on the 10th, 17th, 24th and 31st day. When a certain titer of serum anti-colonic anti body was reached, 2% formalin and antigen fluid ( no Freund adjuvant ) were administered separately by enema. The ulcerative colitis rat model was thus set up. The animals were randomly divided into four groups: model control group ( MC, n = 8 ), electro-acupuncture group (EA, n = 8), herbs-partition moxibustion group (HPM 8), normal control group ( NC, n = 8 ). HPM: Moxa cones made of refined mugwort floss were placed on the medicinal pad (medicinal pad dispensing: Radix Aconiti praeparata, cortex Cinnamomi, etc) for Qihai (RN 6) and Tianshu (S T 25, bilateral) and ignited. Two moxa cones were used for each acupoint once a day and 14 times in all. EA: Tianshu (bilateral) and Qihai were stimulated by the intermittent pulse with 2 Hz frequency, 4mA intensity for 20 min once a day and 14 times in all. After treatment, rats of all four groups were killed simultaneously. The spleen was separated and the distal colon was dissected. Total tissue RNA was isolated by the guanidinium thiocyanate phenol-chloroform extraction method. RT-PCR technique was used to study the expression of IL-1β and IL-6 mRNA.

RESULTS: IL-1β and IL-6 mRNAs were not detected in the spleen and colonic mucosa of the NC rats, whereas they were significantly expressed in that of the MC rats. IL-1β and IL-6 mRNAs we re markedly lower in the EA and HPM rats than that in MC rats. There was no significant difference between the levels of IL-1β and IL-6 mRNAs in the EA and HPM rats. The expressions of IL-1β and IL-6 mRNAs were nearly the same in the spleen and colon of all groups.

CONCLUSION: Acupuncture and moxibustion greatly inhibited the expression of IL-1β and IL-6 mRNA in the experimental ulcerative colitis rats.

Keywords: colitis, ulcerative/therapy, acupuncture and moxibustion therapy, gene expression, cytokines, interleukin-1β, interleukin-6