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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2013, Article ID 294091, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/294091
Research Article

Effect of Electroacupuncture Intervention on Expression of CGRP, SP, COX-1, and PGE2 of Dorsal Portion of the Cervical Spinal Cord in Rats with Neck-Incision Pain

1Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Institute of Acu-Moxibustion, China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences, 16 Nanxiaojie Street, Dongzhimennei, Beijing 100700, China
2Department of Physiology, Institute of Acu-Moxibustion, China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences, 16 Nanxiaojie Street, Dongzhimennei, Beijing 100700, China

Received 3 June 2013; Accepted 19 July 2013

Academic Editor: Yong-Qing Yang

Copyright © 2013 Li-na Qiao 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

The present study was aimed to determine if cervicospinal substance P (SP) and its neurokinin-1 receptor (NK-1R), calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), cyclooxygenase-1 (COX-1), and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) were involved in electroacupuncture (EA) analgesia in neck-incision pain rats. EA intervention was applied to bilateral Futu (LI18), Hegu (LI4)-Neiguan (PC6), and Zusanli (ST36)-Yanglingquan (GB34) for 30 min. Cervicospinal SP and CGRP immunoactivity was detected by immunofluorescence technique, NK-1R and COX-1 protein and mRNA expression levels were determined using Western blot and real-time PCR, respectively, and PGE2 content was measured using ELISA. Outcomes indicated that EA of EA-LI18 and LI4-PC6 (not ST36-GB34) significantly suppressed neck-incision induced decrease of thermal pain threshold ( ). EA stimulation of LI18 and LI4-PC6 markedly inhibited neck-incision induced upregulation of SP and CGRP immunoactivity, NK-1 R and COX-1 mRNA and protein expression levels, as well as the increase of PGE2 content in the dorsal cervicospinal cord ( ). These findings showed that LI18 and LI4-PC6 EA stimulation-induced downregulation of SP, CGRP, NK-1R, COX-1, and PGE2 levels in the dorsal cervicospinal cord may contribute to their effects in relieving neck-incision pain. This study highlights the targets of EA intervention for reducing post-thyroid-surgery pain for the first time.