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Neurosci Lett. 2002 Feb 8;319(1):45-8.

Antipyretic effects of acupuncture on the lipopolysaccharide-induced fever and expression of interleukin-6 and interleukin-1 beta mRNAs in the hypothalamus of rats.

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Department of Meridianology and Acupoint, College of Oriental Medicine, Kyung Hee University, 1 Hoegi-dong, Dongdaemoon-gu, Seoul 130-701, South Korea.


We observed the changes of body temperature and the cytokine expressions in the hypothalamus of rats to investigate the effect and mechanism of antipyretic action of acupuncture. Lipopolysaccharide (LPS, i.p., 2.5 mg/kg) was injected into rats and manual acupuncture was performed on Shaofu (HT8), Zutonggu (BL66) or Xingjian (LR2), respectively. The results showed that fever induced by LPS-injection was recovered significantly by acupuncture on each acupoint. LPS increased hypothalamic mRNA levels of interleukin-6 and interleukin-1 beta which, on the contrary, were also reduced to normal levels by acupuncture stimulation on BL66. These results suggest that the acupuncture stimulation may be effective for reducing elevated body temperature induced by bacterial inflammation, and part of its action may be mediated through the suppression of hypothalamic production of pro-inflammatory cytokines.

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