[Effects of electroacupuncture at different acupoints on learning and memory ability and PSD-95 protein expression on hippocampus CA1 in rats with autism].
[Article in Chinese]
Zhang XJ, Wu Q.
College of Acupuncture and Moxibustion, Fujian University of TCM, Fuzhou 350122, China.
Abstract
OBJECTIVE:
To explore the effect mechanism of electroacupuncture (EA) at Changqiang (GV 1) or Baihui (GV 20) on autism based on molecular biology.
METHODS:
The autism model was established by intraperitoneal injection of sodium valproate (VPA) in Wistar pregnant rats. Forty young rats with autism were selected and randomly divided into a model group, a non-acupoint group, an electroacupuncture at "Changqiang" (GV 1) (EAGV 1 for short) group and an electroacupuncture at "Baihui" (GV 20) (EAGV 20 for short) group. Another 10 normal young rats were selected as a blank group. In the EAGV 1 group, acupuncture was applied at Houhai [as Changqiang (GV 1)], then EA apparatus was connected with continuous wave, 2 Hz, 20 min, once a day for consecutive 20 days. The same EA manipulation as EAGV 1 group was used in the EAGV 20 group where "Baihui" (GV 20) was selected and non-acupoint group where non-acupoint in the right rib was selected. Blank group and model group were reared under the same conditions without any intervention. The escape latency and the ratio of swimming distance in platform quadrant to total swimming distance in each group were observed by using Morris water maze, and the PSD-95 protein expression in hippocampal CA 1 was measured by immunohistochemical techniques.
RESULTS:
Compared with the blank group, the escape latency in the model group and the non-acupoint group lengthened (both P < 0.05), the ratio of swimming distance in platform quadrant to total swimming distance was decreased (both P < 0.05), the PSD-95 protein expression was decreased (P < 0.05). Compared with the model group, the escape latency in the EAGV 1 group and the EAGV 20 group were decreased (both P < 0.05), the ratio of swimming distance in platform quadrant to total swimming distance was increased, the PSD-95 protein expression was increased (both P < 0.05). But the escape latency, the ratio of swimming distance in platform quadrant to total swimming distance and the PSD-95 protein expression had no significant difference between EAGV 1 group and EAGV 20 group (P > 0.05).
CONCLUSION:
Electroacupuncture at Changqiang (GV 1) or Baihui (GV 20) can respectively improve learning and memory ability of rats with autism, which has no significant difference and the mechanism of action may be related to regulation of the PSD-95 protein expression.




2.
Zhongguo Zhen Jiu. 2013 Jul;33(7):627-31.

[Treatment of autism children: observation on efficacy of behavior training with retention of needles on head].
[Article in Chinese]
Yuan Q, Liu YS, Yu YT, Luo QY, Huang XR, Zeng XY.
Clinical Medical College of Acupuncture-Moxibustion and Rehabilitation, Guangzhou University of CM, Guangzhou 510405, Guangdong Province, China.
Abstract
OBJECTIVE:
To observe the effect difference of behavior training with head needling retention and behavior training after acupuncture for autism children.
METHODS:
Sixty qualified autism children were divided randomly into simultaneous head needling retention and behavior training group (trial group) and behavior training after acupuncture treatment group (control group) with 30 case in each group. Retention needles on the head with simultaneous behavior training was applied for the trial group. The main acupoints included Sishen Xue, Dingshen Sanxue (3 points for mental tranquilization), Nao Sanxue (3 points for the function of brain), Shou Zhisanxue (3 points for mental activities on hand) and Zozhi Sonxue (3 points for mental activities on foot). Other points were combined according to conditions of patients. Needles on the 4 extremities were withdrawn first after 30 minutes, needles on head were remained during behavior training. While behavior training was applied to the control group when acupuncture treatment was completely accomplished. Treatments were applied once a day to both groups. And 3 months was taken as one observation cycle. Estimation was made on therapeutic effect and developing level of autism children with CARS and PEP.
RESULTS:
The total effective rate of the trial group was 83.3% (25/30), better than 66.7% (20/30) of the control group (P < 0.05). The CARS scores of both groups declined after the treatment. And the score of trail group was lower than the control group (all P < 0.05). While the PEP scores of both groups increased, and the score of trail group was higher than the control group (all P < 0.05). The increasing level of scores of cognitive understanding and cognitive expression were all better than the control group (all P < 0.05).
CONCLUSION:
The effect of behavior training with head needle retention on autism children is better than behavior training after acupuncture treatment, especially in enhancing cognition understanding and cognition expression.

Zhongguo Zhen Jiu. 2013 Jul;33(7):609-13.

PMID: 24032193 [PubMed - in process]






Res Dev Disabil. 2012 Jul-Aug;33(4):1136-46. doi: 10.1016/j.ridd.2012.02.001. Epub 2012 Mar 22.
Transcutaneous electrical acupoint stimulation in children with autism and its impact on plasma levels of arginine-vasopressin and oxytocin: a prospective single-blinded controlled study.
Zhang R, Jia MX, Zhang JS, Xu XJ, Shou XJ, Zhang XT, Li L, Li N, Han SP, Han JS.
Source
Neuroscience Research Institute, Peking University, Department of Neurobiology, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Key Laboratory for Neuroscience, Ministry of Education, Beijing, PR China.
Abstract
Acupuncture increases brain levels of arginine-vasopressin (AVP) and oxytocin (OXT), which are known to be involved in the modulation of mammalian social behavior. Transcutaneous electrical acupoint stimulation (TEAS) is often used clinically to produce a similar stimulation to that of acupuncture on the acupoints. In the present study, TEAS was applied to children with autism to assess its therapeutic efficacy. Seventy-six autistic children receiving rehabilitation training were divided into 2 groups: a treatment group receiving TEAS 30min per day, 5 days per week for 12 weeks (n=37) and a control group without TEAS treatment (n=39). A series of rating scales was used in outcome assessment. Plasma levels of AVP and OXT were determined by enzyme immunoassay (EIA) before and after treatment. The TEAS group showed a significant improvement over the control in their emotional response, fear or anxiety, level/consistency of intellective relations and general impressions on the Childhood Autism Rating Scale (CARS) as well as improvements in the sensory and related factors in the Autism Behavior Checklist (ABC). In addition, the varieties of accepted food increased after TEAS treatment. It appears that TEAS was effective in autistic children who showed passive and aloof behavior, but not in those who were active but odd. The plasma level of AVP was significantly higher in the TEAS group than in the control group after the intervention. In addition, the change in the plasma AVP level paralleled the improvement of some of the behavior factors in CARS, including adaptation to environmental change, listening response, perceptive response and fear or anxiety. It is concluded that TEAS is effective for the treatment of autistic children with a passive and aloof social interaction style. Changes in plasma levels of AVP and possibly OXT may be involved in mediating the therapeutic effect of TEAS.
Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.




Zhongguo Zhen Jiu. 2011 Aug;31(8):692-6.
[Treatment of autism with scalp acupunctur].
[Article in Chinese]
Li N, Jin BX, Li JL, Liu ZH.
Source
Neuro-Rehabilitation Department, Nanhai Women and Children Hospital Affiliated to Guangzhou University of CM, Foshan 528200, Guangdong Prorince, China. linuo_lijieling@126.com
Abstract
OBJECTIVE:
To verify the efficacy on autism treated with scalp acupuncture for regaining the consciousness and opening the orifice in children.
METHODS:
Seventy cases of child autism were divided into an observation group (30 cases) and a control group (40 cases). In observation group, the cases were treated with scalp acupuncture for regaining the consciousness and opening the orifice, in combination with music therapy and structure education method. Scalp acupuncture was applied to intelligent nine needles (frontal five needles, Sishencong (EX-HN 1)), affection area, heart and liver area, once a day, at the interval once every one week. Totally, 60 treatments made one session. In control group, music therapy and structure education method were applied simply. Clancy Autism Behavior Scale, Childhood Autism Behavior Scale (CARS), Autism Behavior Checklist (ABC) and Gesell Developmental Scale (social adaptive behaviors and language development) were adopted to assess the scores before treatment and after 1 session of treatment.
RESULTS:
After treatment, the scores in Clancy Autism Behavior Scale, CARS and ABC were lower apparently in observation group as compared with those before treatment (all P < 0.01), and the scores in Clancy Autism Behavior Scale and ABC were lower than those in control group (both P < 0.01). In observation group, the scores of social adaptive behavior scale and language development scale were improved obviously after treatment (both P < 0.01), which were all higher than those in control group (both P < 0.01). In observation, between the group aged from 4 to 6 years and the group aged from 2 to 3 years, the value differences in Clancy Autism Behavior Scale, ABC and social adaptive development scale did not present statistical significance in group comparison before and after treatment (all P > 0.05).
CONCLUSION:
Scalp acupuncture for regaining the consciousness and opening the orifice can significantly improve the efficacy on autism, effectively relieve child autism symptoms and enhance the intelligence, language ability and social adaptive ability. Moreover, the efficacy cannot be impacted by child's age.




Chin J Integr Med. 2014 Jan;20(1):19-23. doi: 10.1007/s11655-014-1680-2. Epub 2013 Dec 29.
Evaluating the effectiveness of electro-acupuncture as a treatment for childhood autism using single photon emission computed tomography.
Zhao ZQ1, Jia SW, Hu S, Sun W.
Author information


Abstract
OBJECTIVE:
To explore the effectiveness of electro-acupuncture (EA) in the treatment of childhood autism (CA) and evaluate its effectiveness using single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT).
METHODS:
A total of 55 CA patients (4.52±2.73 years) were enrolled in this study. All patients received EA treatments and were examined by SPECT before and after treatments.
RESULTS:
Following treatment, the intracerebral multiple focal radioactivity distribution defect areas of CA patients were observed to be partially filled. Specifically, significant differences in the ratios of regional cerebral blood flow and global cerebral blood flow before (Fb) and after (Fe) EA treatment in different lesions were observed (in the left prefrontal cortex, t=5.01, P<0.01; in the right prefrontal cortex, t=2.32, P<0.05; in the left temporal lobe, t=4.54, P<0.01; in the right temporal lobe, t=2.90, P<0.05; in the left Broca's area, t=5.82, P<0.01). After EA treatment, the patients exhibited symptomatic relief.
CONCLUSION:
EA is useful to treat CA and SPECT can be used to evaluate the effectiveness of this treatment.



Physiol Behav. 2015 Aug 8. pii: S0031-9384(15)30068-8. doi: 10.1016/j.physbeh.2015.08.014. [Epub ahead of print]
Electro-acupuncture improves the social interaction behavior of rats.
Zhang HF1, Li HX1, Dai YC1, Xu XJ1, Han SP2, Zhang R3, Han JS4.
Author information


Abstract
Oxytocin (OXT) and arginine-vasopressin (AVP) are two closely related neuropeptides and implicated in the regulation of mammalian social behaviors. Prior clinical study in our laboratory suggested that electro-acupuncture (EA) alleviated social impairment in autistic children accompanied by changes of peripheral levels of OXT and AVP. However, it remains unclear whether EA stimulation had an impact on central OXT and AVP levels. In the present study, rats were subjected to a single session of EA (sEA) or repeated sessions of EA (rEA). Following the stimulation, mRNA levels and peptide levels of OXT/AVP systems were determined. The results showed that sEA led to region-specific up-regulation of OXT and AVP mRNA levels in the hypothalamus where the peptides were produced, without affecting the content of OXT and AVP in hypothalamus and peripheral blood. The rEA of 5 sessions in 9days was given to the low socially interacting (LSI) rats. LSI rats underwent rEA showed significant improvement of social behavior characterized by spending more time investigating the strange rats in three-chamber sociability test. The improved sociability was accompanied by an up-regulation of mRNA and the peptide levels of OXT or AVP in SON of hypothalamus as well as a significant increase of serum level of AVP. It is concluded that activation of OXT/AVP systems may be associated with the pro-social effect caused by EA stimulation.



J Acupunct Meridian Stud. 2015 Aug;8(4):183-91. doi: 10.1016/j.jams.2015.06.008. Epub 2015 Jun 19.
Laser Acupuncture Improves Behavioral Disorders and Brain Oxidative Stress Status in the Valproic Acid Rat Model of Autism.
Khongrum J1, Wattanathorn J2.
Author information


Abstract
The therapeutic strategy against autism, a severe neurological development disorder, is one of the challenges of this decade. Recent findings show that oxidative stress plays a crucial role on the pathophysiology of autism, and laser acupuncture at Shenmen (HT7) can improve oxidative status in many neurological disorders. Therefore, we aimed to assess the effect of laser acupuncture at HT7 on behavior disorders and oxidative stress status in the cortex, striatum, and hippocampus of the valproic acid rat model of autism. Laser acupuncture was performed once daily during postnatal day (PND) 14-PND 40. Behavioral tests including rotarod, open-field, learning and memory, and social behavior tests were performed during PND 14-PND 40. At the end of study, brain oxidative status including malondialdehyde levels and the activities of superoxide dismutase, catalase, and glutathione peroxidase were determined in the cortex, striatum, and hippocampus. Laser acupuncture at HT7 significantly improved autistic-like behaviors. Decreased malondialdehyde levels were observed in all areas mentioned above, however, increased glutathione peroxidase activity was observed only in the striatum and hippocampus. No changes in superoxide dismutase and catalase activities were observed in any investigated area of the brain. Therefore, our study suggests that laser acupuncture at HT7 partly mitigates autistic-like symptoms via improved oxidative status.
Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.