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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2012, Article ID 817378, 7 pages
Research Article

Sino-European Transcontinental Basic and Clinical High-Tech Acupuncture Studies—Part 1: Auricular Acupuncture Increases Heart Rate Variability in Anesthetized Rats

1Department of Physiology, Institute of Acupuncture and Moxibustion, China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences, Dongzhimen Nanxiaojie Street, Beijing 100700, China
2TCM Research Center Graz and Research Unit of Biomedical Engineering in Anesthesia and Intensive Care Medicine, Medical University of Graz, Auenbruggerplatz 29, 8036 Graz, Austria

Received 8 November 2011; Accepted 28 November 2011

Academic Editor: Lu Wang

Copyright © 2012 Xin-Yan Gao 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.


Evidence-based research concerning the effects of high-tech acupuncture on autonomic function was performed by two research teams from China and Austria. This study describes the first transcontinental teleacupuncture measurements in animals. Heart rate (HR) and heart rate variability (HRV) recordings in 10 male Sprague-Dawley anesthetized rats were performed under stable conditions in Beijing, China, and the data analysis was completed in Graz, Austria. The electrocardiograms (ECGs) were recorded by an HRV Medilog AR12 system during acupuncture of the ear and body (PC6 Neiguan, CV12 Zhongwan, ST36 Zusanli). The data were analyzed using specially adapted novel Austrian software. HR did not change significantly during any acupuncture stimulation in anesthetized rats (ear acupuncture, PC6, CV12, or ST36). Total HRV only changed significantly during auricular acupuncture (acupoint heart). The low-frequency/high-frequency ratio parameter decreased significantly during stimulation of ST36. This change was based on intensification of the related mechanism of blood pressure regulation that has been demonstrated in previous studies in humans. Modernization of acupuncture research performed as a collaboration between China and Austria has also been demonstrated.