Molecular changes in remote tissues induced by electro-acupuncture stimulation at acupoint ST36

Sam Woong Rho, Gi Soon Choi, Eun Jung Ko, Sun Kwang Kim, Young Seop Lee, Hye Jung Lee, Moo Chang Hong, Min Kyu Shin, Byung Il Min, Hyun Jung Kee, Cheol Koo Lee, Hyun Su Bae

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Citations (Scopus)


To investigate the effects of electro-acupuncture (EA) treament on regions remote from the application, we measured cellular, enzymatic, and transcriptional activities in various internal tissues of healthty rats. The EA was applied to the well-identified acupoint ST36 of the leg. After application, we measured the activity of natural killer cells in the spleen, gene expression in the hypothalamus, and the activities of antioxidative enzymes in the hypothalamus, liver and red blood cells. The EA treatment increased natural killer cell activity in the spleen by approximated. 44%. It also induced genes related to pain, including 5-Hydroxytryptamine (serotonin) receptor 3a (Htr3a) and Endothelin receptor type B (Ednrb) in the hypothalamus, and increased the activity of superoxide dismutase in the hypothalamus, liver, and red blood cells. These findings indicate that EA mediates its effects through changes in cellular activity, gene expression, and enzymatic activity in mutliple remote tissues. The sum of these alterations may explain the beneficial effects of EA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)178-183
Number of pages6
JournalMolecules and cells
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2008 Apr 30
Externally publishedYes


  • Acupoint ST36
  • Electro-acupuncture
  • Gene expression
  • Oxidative stress
  • Reactive oxygen species
  • Remote tissues

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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