[Experimental study on functional connection between the lung and large intestine meridians in the rat: cross-talk between the lung and large intestine meridians].Zhen Ci Yan Jiu. 2013 Dec; 38(6):453-8.ZC
According to the theory of traditional Chinese medicine about "close association between the lung and the large intestine", the present study was designed to investigate the functional relationship between the Lung and Large Intestine Meridians and the colorectum by using electrophysiological methods.
A total of 40 SD rats were used in the present study. Under anesthesia, the cardiopulmonary branch of the left sympathetic nerve (CPSN) was separated for recording the electrical activities with a pair of platinum wire electrodes. Intra-colorectal pressure was recorded using a water-balloon inserted into the anus and connected to a pressure-transducer for observing rectocolonic pressure changes (mobility). Electroacupuncture (EA) stimulation was applied to bilateral "Taiyuan" (LU 9)- "Jingqu" (LU 8) of the Lung Meridian, "Yangxi" (LI 5)-"Pianli" (LI 6) of the Large Intestine Meridian, and "Shangjuxu" (ST 37)-"Zusanli" (ST 36) of the Stomach Meridian, respectively. Colorectal distension (CRD, visceral pain stimulation, 60 mmHg and 80 mmHg) was performed using an air-balloon for observing its influence on EA stimulation of LU 9- LU 8 induced changes of electrical activities of CPSN.
Under anesthesia conditions, no spontaneous electrical activities of the CPSN were found in rats. After EA stimulation (3 times of the threshold intensity) of the bilateral "Taiyuan" (LU 9)- "Jingqu" (LU 8) of the Lung Meridian, and "Yangxi" (LI 5)-"Pianli" (LI 6) of the Large Intestine Meridian, the evoked discharge numbers of the cardiopulmonary sympathetic nerve were (11.26 +/- 2.34) and (10.73 +/- 2.62) spikes, respectively, without significant differences between the two groups (P > 0.05). Compared with pre-stimulation, the colorectal motility (amplitudes of the intra-colorectal pressure waves) was obviously increased following EA stimulation of LU 9-LU 8 of the Lung Meridian, LI 5-LI 6 of the Large Intestine Meridian and "Shangjuxu" (ST 37)-"Zusanli" (ST 36) , Lower-Ho (Sea) acupoints of the Large Intestine Meridian (P < 0.05). After CRD stimulation at 60 mmHg and 80 mmHg, the LU 9- LU 8-stimulation evoked discharge rates of CPSN were reduced by 43.46% and 67.42%, respectively.
EA stimulation of LU 9- LU 8 of the Lung Meridian and LI 5-LI 6 of the Large Intestine Meridian can activate discharges of CPSN, and increase the colorectal motility in the rat. CRD stimulation inhibits the activated effect of EA on electrical activities of CPSN. These results show a functional communication or cross-talk between the lung and the colorectum.