Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine / 2007 / Article

Original Article | Open Access

Volume 4 |Article ID 276565 | https://doi.org/10.1093/ecam/nel107

Nobuo Yamaguchi, Takashi Takahashi, Masahiro Sakuma, Toshiroh Sugita, Kumiko Uchikawa, Satoshi Sakaihara, Tsugiyasu Kanda, Matsuo Arai, Kenji Kawakita, "Acupuncture Regulates Leukocyte Subpopulations in Human Peripheral Blood", Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, vol. 4, Article ID 276565, 7 pages, 2007. https://doi.org/10.1093/ecam/nel107

Acupuncture Regulates Leukocyte Subpopulations in Human Peripheral Blood


Acupuncture has recently been attracting more and more people throughout the world as an alternative treatment, however little is known about its physiological activities (i.e. immune system). We examined acupuncture both quantitatively and qualitatively by measuring CD-positive cell counts and cytokine expression levels in the blood, to determine the activity of T cells, B cells, macrophages and natural killer (NK) cells. Fifteen milliliters of peripheral blood obtained from 17 healthy volunteers aged 21–51 years, were analyzed using flow cytometry before and after acupuncture treatment. There was a statistically significant increase in the number of CD2+, CD4+, CD8+, CD11b+, CD16+, CD19+, CD56+ cells as well as IL-4, IL-1β and IFN-γ levels in the cells after acupuncture stimulation of meridian points. These observations indicate that acupuncture may regulate the immune system and promote the activities of humoral and cellular immunity as well as NK cell activity. In this article, we discussed how acupuncture regulated leukocyte numbers and functions since they are considered to be potential indicators for evaluating complementary and alternative medicine.

Copyright © 2007 Nobuo Yamaguchi 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.

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