To observe the effect of scalp-acupuncture intervention on the expression of parahippocampal factor-κB p 65 mRNA (NF-κB p 65 mRNA), IκB mRNA, interleukin-1 β (IL-1 β) and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) in rats with cerebral ischemia (CI), so as to investigate its molecular mechanisms underlying improving CI by reducing inflammatory response.
A total of 64 SD rats were randomized into normal control, model, medication and scalp-acupuncture groups, with 16 rats in each group. The focal CI model was established by middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO). Intraperitoneal injection of Pyrrolidine Dithiocarbamate (100 mg•kg－1•d－1) was administrated for rats in the medication group, once a day for 7 days. For rats of the scalp-acupuncture group, the acupuncture needles were rapidly inserted into bilateral Dingnieqianxiexian (MS 6) and Dingniehouxiexian (MS 7), followed by twirling the needles at 200 cycles/min for 1 min, once again every 10 min during 30 min's needle retention. The treatment was conducted once a day for 7 days. The neurologic deficit score (0－5 points, impaired consciousness, death, etc.) and neurological function score (motor, sensory and sensory tests, 0－10 points) were assessed according to Longa's (1989) and Schäbitz's (2004) methods, respectively. The expression levels of NF-κB p 65 mRNA and IκB mRNA in the parahippocampus gyrus tissue were detected by fluorescence quantitative reverse transcription-PCR, and IL-1 β and TNF-α proteins in the parahippocampus gyrus tissue were detected by immunohistochemistry.
After modeling, the neurologic deficit and neurological function scores and the expression levels of NF-κB p 65 mRNA, IL-1 β and TNF-α in the parahip-pocampus were significantly increased in the model group than in the normal group (P<0.01), while the expression of IκB mRNA was considerably down-regulated (P<0.01). Following treatment intervention, the neurologic deficit and neurological function scores as well as NF-κB p 65 mRNA, and IL-1 β and TNF-α protein expression were significantly decreased in both scalp-acupuncture and medication groups compared with the model group (P<0.05, P<0.01), and the decreased expression of IκB mRNA was obviously increased (P<0.05)．.
Scalp-acupuncture can improve neurologic function in cerebral ischemic rats, which is related with its effects in up-regulating the expression of IκB to inhibit the dissociation of NF-κB, then decreasing the expression of IL-1 β and TNF-α (reducing inflammatory response) in the parahippocampal gyrus tissue.