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31 January 2019 : Original article  

Effects of Electroacupuncture on Expression of D1 Receptor (D1R), Phosphorylation of Extracellular-Regulated Protein Kinase 1/2 (p-ERK1/2), and c-Fos in the Insular Cortex of Ketamine-Addicted Rats

Feng Wu1ADEFG, Jian Ding1BCEF, Huai-bin Li1ADE*, Hua-chun Miao1BC, Rui Bao1B, Shan Yang1B

DOI: 10.12659/MSMBR.913285

Med Sci Monit Basic Res 2019; 25:26-32

Abstract

BACKGROUND: The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of electroacupuncture (EA) on expression of the D1 receptor (D1R), phosphorylation of extracellular-regulated protein kinase 1/2 (p-ERK1/2) and c-Fos in the insular cortex (IC) of ketamine-addicted rats.

MATERIAL AND METHODS: Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into 7 groups: the normal group, the normal saline (NS) group, the ketamine (Ket) group, the U0126+Ket group, the SCH23390+Ket group, the Ket+acupoints EA (EA1) group, and the Ket+ non-acupoints EA (EA2) group. We used immunohistochemistry to detect the expression of D1R, p-ERK1/2, and c-Fos. We also used Nissl staining techniques to study the morphology of IC neurons.

RESULTS: Our study demonstrated that the ketamine group had sparsely distributed neurons, large intracellular vacuoles, nuclei shift, and unclear nucleolus. The number of Nissl-positive (neuronal) cells in the ketamine group were decreased than in the normal group. Our results also indicated that there was significantly lower expression of D1R, p-ERK1/2, and c-Fos in the IC of the U0126+Ket group, SCH23390+Ket group, and Ket+EA1 group as compared with that of the Ket group.

CONCLUSIONS: Ketamine addiction induces c-Fos overexpression in the IC by increasing the expression of D1R and p-ERK1/2. Acupoints EA downregulate D1R and p-ERK1/2 by reducing the overexpression of c-Fos.

Keywords: Cerebral Cortex, Electroacupuncture, Extracellular Signal-Regulated MAP Kinases, Genes, fos, Ketamine, Receptors, Dopamine D1, Acupuncture Points, Butadienes, Neurons, Nitriles, Phosphorylation

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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research eISSN: 2325-4416
Medical Science Monitor Basic Research eISSN: 2325-4416