Table of Contents Author Guidelines Submit a Manuscript
Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2013, Article ID 198282, 12 pages
Research Article

Moxibustion Inhibits the ERK Signaling Pathway and Intestinal Fibrosis in Rats with Crohn’s Disease

1Yueyang Hospital of Integrated Traditional Chinese and Western Medicine, Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Shanghai 200437, China
2Key Laboratory of Acupuncture-Moxibustion and Immunological Effects, Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Shanghai 200030, China
3Laboratory of Experimental Acupuncture of College of Acumox and Tuina, Chengdu University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Chengdu 610075, China
4School of Acupuncture-Moxibustion and Tuina, Beijing University of Chinese Medicine, Beijing 100029, China

Received 27 May 2013; Accepted 2 July 2013

Academic Editor: Yong-Qing Yang

Copyright © 2013 Xiaomei Wang 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.


Intestinal fibrosis is the main pathological process in Crohn’s disease (CD); acupuncture and moxibustion can inhibit the process of fibrosis in CD rats, but the regulatory mechanism remains unknown. The present study observed the effect of moxibustion on the extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) signaling pathway in the CD rat. The result shows that the phosphorylation of the Ras, Raf-1, MEK-1, and ERK-1/2 proteins and the expression of the corresponding mRNAs in the colon tissue of CD rat were significantly higher than the normal control group. Both treatments with mild moxibustion and with herb-separated moxibustion significantly reduced the expression of the Ras, Raf-1, MEK-1, and ERK-1/2 proteins and Ras and Raf-1 mRNA. MEK-1 and ERK-1/2 mRNA expression in each treatment group showed a downward trend, and the ERK-1/2 mRNA levels were significantly lower in the mild moxibustion group. It indicates that Ras, Raf-1, MEK-1, and ERK-1/2 are involved in the process of intestinal fibrosis in CD rats. Moxibustion can downregulate the abnormal expression of colonic Ras, Raf-1, MEK-1, and ERK-1/2 protein and mRNA levels in CD intestinal fibrosis in rats. Moxibustion may play a role in the treatment of CD intestinal fibrosis by regulating ERK signaling pathway.