Electroacupuncture alleviates intestinal inflammation and barrier dysfunction by activating dopamine in a rat model of intestinal ischaemia.
Acupunct Med. 2020 Jun 9:964528420922232. Epub 2020 Jun 9. PMID: 32517478
BACKGROUND: To investigate whether the mechanism underlying the anti-inflammatory effects of electroacupuncture (EA) at ST36 involves dopamine (DA) and its receptor and whether it is mediated by the vagus nerve in a rat model of intestinal ischaemia-reperfusion (I/R) injury.
METHODS: Rats were subjected to gut ischaemia for 30 min and then received EA for 30 min with or without abdominal vagotomy or intraperitoneal administration of butaclamol (D1 receptor antagonist) or spiperone (D2 receptor antagonist). Plasma levels of DA and tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-α were assessed 1 or 4 h after reperfusion. Myeloperoxidase (MPO) activity and malondialdehyde (MDA) content in intestinal tissues were assessed using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) kits. Intestinal tissue injury was assessed by observation of the pathological lesions and permeability to4 kDa fluorescein isothiocyanate (FITC)-dextran.
RESULTS: EA significantly increased levels of DA and lowered levels of TNF-α. EA also inhibited intestinal levels of MPO and MDA and intestinal tissue injury and decreased intestinal permeability to FITC-dextran. Abdominal vagotomy and intraperitoneal administration of butaclamol (but not spiperone) inhibited the effects of EA.
CONCLUSION: These findings suggest that EA at ST36 could attenuate intestinal I/R-induced inflammatory injury and that the underlying mechanism may involve EA-induced increases in levels of DA, mediated by the vagus nerve and D1 receptors.