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J Neurophysiol. 2003 Aug;90(2):780-5. Epub 2003 Apr 2.

Nitric oxide in the gracile nucleus mediates depressor response to acupuncture (ST36).

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  • 1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Harbor University of California Los Angeles Medical Center, David Geffen School of Medicine at University of California at Los Angeles, Torrance, California 90502, USA.

Abstract

The purpose of these studies was to determine the role of gracile nucleus and the effects of l-arginine-derived nitric oxide (NO) synthesis in the nucleus on the cardiovascular responses to electroacupuncture (EA) stimulation of "Zusanli" (ST36). Arterial blood pressure and heart rate were monitored during EA stimulation of ST36 following microinjections of agents into gracile nucleus. EA ST36 produced depressor and bradycardiac responses in anesthetized Sprague-Dawley rats. The cardiovascular responses to EA ST36 were blocked by bilateral microinjection of lidocaine into gracile nucleus. Microinjection of L-arginine into gracile nucleus facilitated the hypotensive and bradycardiac responses to EA ST36. The cardiovascular responses to EA ST36 were attenuated by bilateral microinjection of neuronal NO synthase (nNOS) antisense oligos into gracile nucleus. Microinjection of nNOS sense oligos into gracile nucleus did not alter the cardiovascular response to EA ST36. The results demonstrate that a blockade of neuronal conduction in the gracile nucleus inhibits the cardiovascular responses to EA ST36. The hypotensive and bradycardiac responses to EA ST36 are modified by influences of L-arginine-derived NO synthesis in the gracile nucleus. We conclude that NO plays an important role in mediating the cardiovascular responses to EA ST36 through gracile nucleus.

PMID:
12672780
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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