19 May 2014 : Original article
Effects of acupuncture stimulation on blood glucose concentration in the Otsuka Long-Evans Tokushima Fatty (OLETF) rat, an animal model for type-2 diabetes mellitusHironori NakamuraABCDE, Tatsuyo IshigamiBD, Yoshiyuki KawaseBD, Atsushi YamadaBD, Munenori MinagawaCD, Hiroyasu FukutaDF, Yasuzo KuronoABDG, Hikaru SuzukiADEFG
Med Sci Monit Basic Res 2014; 20:70-75
BACKGROUND: Effects of acupuncture stimulation on blood glucose concentration and body weight were investigated in the Otsuka Long-Evans Tokushima Fatty (OLETF) rat, a model for type-2 diabetes.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: Three groups of rats were used: OLETF, acupuncture-treated OLETF (AcOLETF), and Long-Evans Tokushima Otsuka (LETO) rats (as control for the OLETF rats). In AcOLETF rats, acupuncture stimulation was applied twice a week to 6 points (zhongwan, tianshu, qihai, ganshu, pishu, shenshu) and changes in blood glucose concentration and body weight were measured.
RESULTS: Initially, at 6 weeks old, there was no significant difference in blood glucose levels between groups. Blood glucose levels increased with age in each group, reaching a maximum of about 430 mg/dl at 37 weeks in OLETF rats. In AcOLETF rats, blood glucose levels increased at a slower rate than in OLETF rats, reaching a maximum concentration of about 280 mg/dl at 37 weeks of age, significantly lower than that in OLETF rats. The concentration of blood glucose in LETO rats had stabilized at a maximum value of 120~140 mg/dl by 16 weeks, remaining at this level for up to 39 weeks. In each group, body weight increased with age and was not affected by acupuncture treatment.
CONCLUSIONS: In OLETF rats, acupuncture treatment significantly reduced blood glucose levels, but not their body weight, suggesting that acupuncture therapy was effective in preventing the development of type-2 diabetes mellitus.
Keywords: Acupuncture Therapy, Acupuncture Points, Blood Glucose - metabolism, Body Weight, Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 - therapy, Rats, Inbred OLETF, Skin - pathology
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