[Effect of Acupuncture Intervention on c-jun N-terminal Kinase Signaling in the Hippocampus in Rats with Forced Swimming Stress].Zhen Ci Yan Jiu. 2016 Feb; 41(1):18-23.ZC
To observe the effect of acupuncture on c-jun N-terminal Kinase (JNK) signaling in the hippocampus in rats with forced-swimming stress, so as to reveal its underlying mechanism in relieving depression-like motor response.
Forty-eight Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into 8 groups as control, control + JNK inhibitor (SP 600125) , model, model + SP 600125, acupuncture, acupuncture + SP 600125, Fluoxetine (an anti-depressant) , and Fluoxetine + SP 600125 (n = 6 in each group). The depression-like behavior (immobility) model was established by forcing the rat to swim in a glass-cylinder and solitary raise. Acupuncture stimulation was applied to "Baihui" (GV-20) and "Yintang" (GV 29) for 20 min before forced swimming and once again 24 h later.. The rats of the Fluoxetine and Fluoxetine+ SP 600125 groups were treated by intragastric administration of fluoxetine 10 mL (1.8 mg)/kg before forced swimming and once again 24 h thereafter. The rats of the model + SP 600125 and acupuncture + SP 600125 groups were treated by intraperitoneal injection of SP 600125 (10 mg/kg) 90 min before forced swimming and 30 min before acupuncture intervention, respectively. The immobility duration of rats in the water glass-cylinder was used to assess their depression-like behavior response. The expression levels of protein kinase kinase 4 (MKK 4), MKK 7, JNK, and phosphorylated JNK (p-JNK) in the hippocampus were detected by Western blot.
Compared to the control group, the duration of immobility, and the expression levels of hippocampal MKK 4, MKK 7, and p-JNK proteins were significantly increased in the model group (P < 0.01). While in comparison with the model group, the duration of immobility in the model + SP 600125, acupuncture, acupuncture + SP 600125, Fluoxetine and Fluoxetine + SP 600125 groups, the expression levels of hippocampal MKK 4 and MKK 7 proteins in the Fluoxetine + SP 600125 group, and those of p-JNK protein in the acupuncture, acupuncture + SP 600125, model + SP 600125, Fluoxetine and Fluoxetine + SP 600125 groups were considerably decreased (P < 0.05, P < 0.01). No significant differences were found between the control and control + SP 600125 groups and among the model + SP 600125, acupuncture, acupuncture + SP 600125, Fluoxetine and Fluoxetine + SP 600125 groups in the duration of immobility (P > 0.05), and in the expression level of p-JNK protein (P > 0.05). No significant changes were found in the expression levels of JNK among the 8 groups (P > 0.05).
Acupuncture stimulation of GV 20 and GV 29 is effective in relieving depression-like motor response in forced-swimming stress rats, which may be closely associated with its effects in down-regulating the expression of hippocampal p-JNK protein.