From peripheral to central: The role of erk signaling pathway in acupuncture analgesia

Ji Yeun Park, Jongbae J. Park, Songhee Jeon, Ah Reum Doo, Seung Nam Kim, Hyangsook Lee, Younbyoung Chae, William Maixner, Hyejung Lee, Hi Joon Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 18 Citations

Abstract

Despite accumulating evidence of the clinical effectiveness of acupuncture, its mechanism remains largely unclear. We assume that molecular signaling around the acupuncture needled area is essential for initiating the effect of acupuncture. To determine possible bio-candidates involved in the mechanisms of acupuncture and investigate the role of such bio-candidates in the analgesic effects of acupuncture, we conducted 2 stepwise experiments. First, a genome-wide microarray of the isolated skin layer at the GB34-equivalent acupoint of C57BL/6 mice 1 hour after acupuncture found that a total of 236 genes had changed and that extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) activation was the most prominent bio-candidate. Second, in mouse pain models using formalin and complete Freund adjuvant, we found that acupuncture attenuated the nociceptive behavior and the mechanical allodynia; these effects were blocked when ERK cascade was interrupted by the mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase (MEK)/mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) inhibitor U0126 (.8 μg/μL). Based on these results, we suggest that ERK phosphorylation following acupuncture needling is a biochemical hallmark initiating the effect of acupuncture including analgesia. Perspective This article presents the novel evidence of the local molecular signaling in acupuncture analgesia by demonstrating that ERK activation in the skin layer contributes to the analgesic effect of acupuncture in a mouse pain model. This work improves our understanding of the scientific basis underlying acupuncture analgesia.

LanguageEnglish (US)
Pages535-549
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Pain
Volume15
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Acupuncture Analgesia
Acupuncture
Extracellular Signal-Regulated MAP Kinases
Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase Kinases
Analgesics
MAP Kinase Kinase Kinases
Pain
Acupuncture Points
Skin
Freund's Adjuvant
Hyperalgesia
Protein Kinase Inhibitors
Inbred C57BL Mouse
Formaldehyde
Phosphorylation
Genome

Keywords

  • Acupuncture analgesia
  • extracellular signal-regulated kinase
  • mouse pain model
  • skin tissues

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Park, J. Y., Park, J. J., Jeon, S., Doo, A. R., Kim, S. N., Lee, H., ... Park, H. J. (2014). From peripheral to central: The role of erk signaling pathway in acupuncture analgesia. Journal of Pain, 15(5), 535-549. DOI: 10.1016/j.jpain.2014.01.498

From peripheral to central : The role of erk signaling pathway in acupuncture analgesia. / Park, Ji Yeun; Park, Jongbae J.; Jeon, Songhee; Doo, Ah Reum; Kim, Seung Nam; Lee, Hyangsook; Chae, Younbyoung; Maixner, William; Lee, Hyejung; Park, Hi Joon.

In: Journal of Pain, Vol. 15, No. 5, 01.01.2014, p. 535-549.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Park, JY, Park, JJ, Jeon, S, Doo, AR, Kim, SN, Lee, H, Chae, Y, Maixner, W, Lee, H & Park, HJ 2014, 'From peripheral to central: The role of erk signaling pathway in acupuncture analgesia' Journal of Pain, vol. 15, no. 5, pp. 535-549. DOI: 10.1016/j.jpain.2014.01.498
Park JY, Park JJ, Jeon S, Doo AR, Kim SN, Lee H et al. From peripheral to central: The role of erk signaling pathway in acupuncture analgesia. Journal of Pain. 2014 Jan 1;15(5):535-549. Available from, DOI: 10.1016/j.jpain.2014.01.498
Park, Ji Yeun ; Park, Jongbae J. ; Jeon, Songhee ; Doo, Ah Reum ; Kim, Seung Nam ; Lee, Hyangsook ; Chae, Younbyoung ; Maixner, William ; Lee, Hyejung ; Park, Hi Joon. / From peripheral to central : The role of erk signaling pathway in acupuncture analgesia. In: Journal of Pain. 2014 ; Vol. 15, No. 5. pp. 535-549
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