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Electroacupuncture promotes neural cell proliferation in vivo through activation of the ERK1/2 signaling pathway

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The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of electroacupuncture (EA) on cell proliferation and its molecular mechanisms. Sixty rats were randomly divided into 5 groups: sham operation control (SC), ischemia control (IC), EA, EA and DMSO injection (ED), EA and U0126 injection (EU). All the groups, with the exception of SC, underwent middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO), and DMSO or U0126 was injected into the rat in the ED or EU group 30 min prior to MCAO. Cell proliferation was evaluated by proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) immunostaining. The changes of cell cycle proteins (cyclin D1, CDK4, cyclin E, CDK2, p21 and p27) and the ERK1/2 pathway activation were examined by RT-PCR and western blot analysis. The results showed that the positive cell numbers of PCNA immunostaining in the EA and ED groups were more than those in the IC group (P<0.05). The mRNA and protein levels of p21 or p27 were obviously increased, however, the mRNA and protein levels of cyclin D1, CDK4, cyclin E and CDK2 were reduced in the IC and EU groups. The findings suggested that EA activates the ERK1/2 signaling pathway to protect brain injury during cerebral ischemia. However, this positive effect of EA can be blocked by U0126.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: College of Rehabilitation Medicine, Fujian University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Fuzhou, Fujian 350122, P.R. China 2: MOE Key Laboratory of Traditional Chinese Medicine on Osteology and Traumatology and Exercise Rehabilitation, Fujian University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Fuzhou, Fujian 350122, P.R. China 3: Fujian Key Laboratory of Exercise Rehabilitation, Fujian University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Fuzhou, Fujian 350122, P.R. China 4: Academy of Integrative Medicine, Fujian University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Fuzhou, Fujian 350122, P.R. China

Publication date: June 1, 2014

More about this publication?
  • The International Journal of Molecular Medicine is a monthly, peer-reviewed journal devoted to the publication of high quality studies related to the molecular mechanisms of human disease. The journal welcomes research on all aspects of molecular and clinical research, ranging from biochemistry to immunology, pathology, genetics, human genomics, microbiology, molecular pathogenesis, molecular cardiology, molecular surgery and molecular psychology.

    The International Journal of Molecular Medicine aims to provide an insight for researchers within the community in regard to developing molecular tools and identifying molecular targets for the diagnosis and treatment of a diverse number of human diseases.
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