Department of Physiology, Guiyang College of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Guiyang 550001, China.
Acupuncture of the sacral vertebrae has therapeutic effects in patients with overactive bladders. The mechanism of these effects, however, remains unclear. The present study, using urethane-anesthetized rats, investigated the effects of acupuncture stimulation of the sacral vertebrae on bladder activity and bladder activity-related neurons in and around Barrington's nucleus. In 95 of 147 trials (64.6%), acupuncture stimulation of the sacral vertebrae for 1min suppressed bladder contraction for 27-2347s. Acupuncture-induced suppression of bladder contraction was blocked by intraperitoneal injection of bicuculline (Bic). Acupuncture stimulation strongly affected bladder activity-related neurons, including those which fired only prior to the start of contraction (Type E1), those whose firing was maintained during contraction (Type E2), and those whose firing was strongly suppressed during contraction (Type I). All Type E1 neurons and most (93.8%) Type E2 neurons decreased firing when bladder activity was suppressed by acupuncture stimulation. Four of 14 (28.6%) Type I neurons exhibited an excitatory response while 3 of 14 (21.4%) exhibited an inhibitory response. These findings suggest that acupuncture stimulation of the sacral vertebrae suppresses bladder contraction and changes the firing properties of bladder activity-related neurons in and around Barrington's nucleus, and that these changes are mediated by GABAergic systems.
Wang H, Tanaka Y, Kawauchi A, Miki T, Kayama Y, Koyama Y. Are you the author?
Reference: Neurosci Res. 2011 Oct 4. Epub ahead of print.