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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 670362, 21 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/670362
Research Article

Mechanism of Earthquake Simulation as a Prenatal Stressor Retarding Rat Offspring Development and Chinese Medicine Correcting the Retardation: Hormones and Gene-Expression Alteration

1The School of Nursing, Chengdu University of T.C.M., Chengdu 610075, China
2School of Biology and Engineering, Southwest Jiaotong University, Chengdu 610031, China
3Earthquake Emergency Security Center, Sichuan Provincial Seismological Bureau, Chengdu 610041, China
4Molecular Laboratory of T.C.M., Chengdu University of T.C.M., Chengdu 610075, China
5School of Humanity and Information Management, Chengdu Medical University, Chengdu 610075, China

Received 26 August 2012; Revised 3 October 2012; Accepted 5 October 2012

Academic Editor: Jang-Hern Lee

Copyright © 2012 X. G. Zhang et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

We aimed to investigate the mechanism of shaking as a prenatal stressor impacting the development of the offspring and Chinese medicines correcting the alterations. Pregnant rats were randomized into earthquake simulation group (ESG), herbal group (HG) which received herbal supplements in feed after shaking, and control group (CG). Findings revealed body weight and open field test (OFT) score of ESG offspring were statistically inferior to the CG and HG offspring. The corticosterone levels of ESG were higher than those of CG but not than HG. The dopamine level of ESG was slightly lower than that of the CG and of HG was higher than that of ESG. The 5-HT of ESG was higher than CG and HG. The growth hormone level of the ESG was significantly lower than ESG but not than CG. Gene expression profile showed 81 genes upregulated and 39 genes downregulated in ESG versus CG, and 60 genes upregulated and 28 genes downregulated in ESG versus HG. Eighty-four genes were found differentially expressed in ESG versus CG comparison and were normalized in ESG versus HG. We conclude that maternal shaking negatively affected physical and nervous system development, with specific alterations in neurohormones and gene expression. Chinese herbal medicine reduced these negative outcomes.