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Neural Regen Res. 2014 Jun 1;9(11):1163-8. doi: 10.4103/1673-5374.135319.

Acupuncture at the Taixi (KI3) acupoint activates cerebral neurons in elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment.

Author information

1
Department of Rehabilitation, Baoan Hospital, Southern Medical University, Shenzhen, Guangdong Province, China ; Department of Acupuncture and Moxibustion, First Affiliated Hospital of Tianjin University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Tianjin, China.
2
Department of Imaging, Baoan Hospital, Southern Medical University, Shenzhen, Guangdong Province, China.
3
School of Chinese Medicine, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, China.
4
Department of Acupuncture and Moxibustion, First Affiliated Hospital of Tianjin University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Tianjin, China.
5
Department of Rehabilitation, Baoan Hospital, Southern Medical University, Shenzhen, Guangdong Province, China.
6
College of Acupuncture and Moxibustion, Guangxi University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Nanning, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, China.

Abstract

Our previous findings have demonstrated that acupuncture at the Taixi (KI3) acupoint in healthy youths can activate neurons in cognitive-related cerebral cortex. Here, we investigated whether acupuncture at this acupoint in elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment can also activate neurons in these regions. Resting state and task-related functional magnetic resonance imaging showed that the pinprick senstation of acupuncture at the Taixi acupoint differed significantly between elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment and healthy elderly controls. Results showed that 20 brain regions were activated in both groups of participants, including the bilateral anterior cingulate gyrus (Brodmann areas [BA] 32, 24), left medial frontal cortex (BA 9, 10, 11), left cuneus (BA 19), left middle frontal gyrus (BA 11), left lingual gyrus (BA 18), right medial frontal gyrus (BA 11), bilateral inferior frontal gyrus (BA 47), left superior frontal gyrus (BA11), right cuneus (BA 19, 18), right superior temporal gyrus (BA 38), left subcallosal gyrus (BA 47), bilateral precuneus (BA 19), right medial frontal gyrus (BA 10), right superior frontal (BA 11), left cingulate gyrus (BA 32), left precentral gyrus (BA 6), and right fusiform gyrus (BA 19). These results suggest that acupuncture at the Taixi acupoint in elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment can also activate some brain regions.

KEYWORDS:

NSFC; Taixi (KI3); acupoint; acupoint specificity; acupuncture; brain function; cognitive function; functional MRI; mild cognitive impairment; nerve regeneration; neural regeneration; resting state

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