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  • Research Article2022-02-28

    Primo Vascular Node in the Bone Marrow and Longevity

    Vitaly Vodyanoy1,2,*, Oleg Pustovyy1, Ludmila Globa1
    J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2022; 15(1): 12-24 https://doi.org/10.51507/j.jams.2022.15.1.12

    Abstract : Background: Intra-organic bone marrow node is predicted to be a part of the primo vascular system that plays a critical role in hematopoiesis and generation and regeneration of other cells. Two models of cell regeneration were suggested, one involving DNA synthesis and the other pertaining to DNA recycling. Objectives: The aim of this work is to extract a primo node from bone marrow, characterize its structure, understand its biochemistry and cell composition, and suggest a cell regeneration mechanism. Methods: Primo nodes were sampled from segmented halves of the rat femur. We used immunohistochemistry and high-resolution fluorescent microscopy to analyze 1200 samples obtained from 42 rats and 190 primo nodes. Results: Primo nodes in the bone marrow have an oval or round structure of about one millimeter in diameter, which is encompassed by a fine capsule, having incoming and outgoing vessels filled with the extracellular matrix and hematopoietic, mesenchymal, endothelial stem cells, as well as cells of the megakaryocyte family found in other primo nodes. Conclusion: Our findings imply that bone marrow nodes are intra-organic primo vascular nodes, and they provide ways and approaches for further investigation. Bone marrow nodes are simple to examine ex vivo in a variety of environments to assess cell regeneration mechanisms, wound healing, and organism rejuvenation and lifespan. Further research into these and other intra-organic nodes in animals and humans could lead to new regenerative medicine and longevity strategies that have yet to be discovered.

  • Research Article2021-12-31

    Effect of Dry Cupping Therapy on Pain and Functional Disability in Persistent Non-Specific Low Back Pain: A Randomized Controlled Clinical Trial

    Marianna de Melo Salemi1,*, Vanessa Maria da Silva Alves Gomes1, Laylla Marjorye Rebouças Bezerra1, Thania Maion de Souza Melo1, Geisa Guimarães de Alencar1, Iracema Hermes Pires de Mélo Montenegro2, Alessandra Paula de Melo Calado3, Eduardo José Nepomuceno Montenegro1, Gisela Rocha de Siqueira1
    J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2021; 14(6): 219-230 https://doi.org/10.51507/j.jams.2021.14.6.219

    Abstract : Background: Cupping therapy is used to treat musculoskeletal conditions, including low back pain.Objectives: The study assessed the effects of dry cupping on pain and functional disability from persistent nonspecific low back pain. Methods: This was a randomized controlled trial, where participants were allocated to a cupping therapy (n = 19) or sham (n = 18) group, for five 10-minute sessions of cupping therapy, twice a week, to stimulate the acupoints related to low back pain (GV4, BL23, BL24, BL25, and BL30, BL40 and BL58) and emotional aspects (HT3 and ST36). All participants were assessed at baseline, post-treatment and follow up (a finalization period of four weeks) using a visual analogue scale (VAS) and the Oswestry Disability Index (ODI). Groups were compared using the analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) and the effect size was calculated using Cohen̓s d. Results: The cupping therapy group presented a lower mean VAS when compared to the sham, at post-treatment (mean difference: –2.36; standard error [SE]: 0.58; p < 0.001; “large” effect size: –0.94) and follow up (mean difference: –1.71; SE: 0.81; p < 0.042; ‘large’ effect size: –0.83). The cupping therapy group presented a lower mean ODI when compared to the sham post-treatment (mean difference: –4.68; SE: 1.85; p: 0.017; ‘large’ effect size: –0.87), although in follow-up, there was no difference between the groups (mean difference: 4.16; SE: 2.97; p: 0.17; “medium” effect size: –0.70). Conclusion: Dry cupping was more effective in improving pain and functional disability in people with persistent nonspecific low back pain when compared to the sham.

  • Research Article2020-08-01

    Wet Cupping Therapy Improves the Parameters of Ventricular Repolarization

    Mustafa Çelik 1, *, Hasan E. Yücel 2, Serkan Sivri 1, Erdogan Sökmen ? 1, Cahit Uçar 2

    Abstract : Background: Cupping therapy (CT) is an ancient medical treatment since antiquity and is used for the treatment of such various disease states as contagious diseases, chronic or acute inflammatory disease, and autoimmune disorders. Ventricular repolarization is represented by QT and corrected-QT (QTc) intervals from surface electrocardiography. Objectives: As novel repolarization parameters, Tpeak-toTend (Tp-Te) interval, and Tp-Te/QT and Tp-Te/ QTc ratios are suggested to correlate better with ventricular arrhythmia risk in various clinical conditions than sole QT and QTc intervals. In this study, we aimed to determine whether these parameters changed significantly after CT in healthy individuals. Methods: One hundred and twenty participants (57 women and 63 men; mean age: 49.0 ± 13.0 years) participated in this study. ECGs strips were recorded 1 hour before and 1 hour after CT from each participant, and relevant ECG parameters were compared. Results: Tp-Te interval [69.51 ± 11.54 msec vs 63.15 ± 10.89 msec, p = 0.001], Tp-Te/QT ratio [0.191 ± 0.030 vs 0.174 ± 0.031, p = 0.002] and Tp-Te/QTc ratio [0.175 ± 0.030 vs 0.159 ± 0.026, p = 0.001] were found to be significantly decreased 1 hour after the procedure compared with the pre-procedure values. However, no statistically significant change was observed in mean heart rate, QT and QTc intervals, QT/ QRS and cQT/QRS, and frontal QRS/T angle after the procedure compared with the same parameters before the procedure (p > 0.05). Conclusions: In accordance with the results of our study, it is plausible to conclude that CT may exert cardioprotective effect. However, larger scale prospective studies are needed to support our findings.

  • Research Article2022-04-30

    Link Between Electroacupuncture Stimulation near the Sympathetic Trunk and Heart Rate Variability

    Kazufumi Takahashi2,3,*, Xiaoming Wang2,3, Daiyu Shinohara1, Kenji Imai2,3
    J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2022; 15(2): 114-120 https://doi.org/10.51507/j.jams.2022.15.2.114

    Abstract : Background: The cardiovascular system and airway smooth muscles are regulated by the autonomic nervous system.Objectives: This study investigated the effect of electrical acupuncture stimulation near the cervical sympathetic ganglia on heart rate variability and respiratory function.Methods: This prospective, single-center study at Teikyo Heisei University recruited 24 healthy adults randomly assigned to no-stimulation and electroacupuncture (EA) groups in a crossover trial with a 2-week washout period. After 5 min of rest, a 5-min rest or acupuncture stimulus was delivered, followed by a further 5 min of rest for both groups. EA, at 2-Hz (level of no pain), was delivered near the left cervical ganglia at the level of the sixth cervical vertebra in the EA group.Results: The high-frequency component of the heart rate variability was significantly higher in the EA group than that in the no-stimulation group. Further, there was a significant increase in the high-frequency component of the heart rate in the EA group during the stimulation compared to before and after stimulation. Heart rate decreased significantly during EA compared to before stimulation in the EA group. Regarding respiratory function, forced vital capacity, forced expiratory volume in 1 s, and peak flow significantly increased in the EA group compared with the no-stimulation group, and after stimulation compared with before stimulation.Conclusion: Stimulation with 2-Hz EA near the cervical sympathetic trunk increased parasympathetic nerve activity and reduced heart rate. However, the respiratory function was activated via increased sympathetic nerve activity. Therefore, 2-Hz EA may be effective for autonomic nerve regulation in bronchial stenosis.

  • Review Article2022-02-28

    Abstract : The primo vascular system (PVS) is of great interest to scientists in the last few years. The PVS plays a role in stem cell migration, immune function, erythropoiesis, tissue regeneration, and cancer metastasis. Discovered by Bong Han Kim in 1960, the PVS was described as a new, independent system that is distributed in the body of different animals. Since then, several cells have been discovered as important constituents of the PVS. Endothelial cells are hallmarks for the identification of the PVS, as they line the sinuses of the primo vessels and are characterized by their arrangement of rod-shaped nuclei in a parallel, broken-line fashion along the primo vessels. Immune cells as mast cells, eosinophils, neutrophils, and lymphocytes are also hallmarks for the identification of the PVS. One of the most interesting cells in the PVS are p-microcells. Primo nodes are a stem cell niche due to their p-microcells content, which express stem cell biomarkers CD133 and Oct 4. Mature erythrocytes and hematopoietic stem cells have also been observed in the PVS. Hematopoietic stem cells were observed in the PVS. Hematopoietic Stem Cells are the source of the cellular component of blood. Additionally, adrenaline and noradrenaline-producing cells, mesothelial cells, and smooth-muscle-like cells have also been described in the PVS.

  • Obituary2022-02-28

    Obituary: Professor Kwang-Sup Soh (1945-2021)

    Ku Youn Baik1, Hak Soo Shin2, Pan-Dong Ryu3,*
    J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2022; 15(1): 1-3 https://doi.org/10.51507/j.jams.2022.15.1.1
  • Research Article2022-04-30

    Trigger Point Acupuncture and Exercise for Chronic Low Back Pain in Older Adult: a Preliminary Randomized Clinical Trial

    Yoichi Minakawa1,2,*, Shogo Miyazaki1,2, Hideaki Waki1,2, Naruto Yoshida1,2, Kaori Iimura3, Kazunori Itoh4
    J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2022; 15(2): 143-151 https://doi.org/10.51507/j.jams.2022.15.2.143

    Abstract : Background: Exercise therapy is the first choice non-pharmacotherapeutic approach for musculoskeletal pain; however, it often interferes with the implementation and continuation of exercise due to fear-avoidance behaviors. Trigger point acupuncture (TrPAcp) has been reported to reduce musculoskeletal pain.Objectives: To examine the efficacy of exercise combined with TrPAcp compared to exercise alone for older patients with chronic low back pain (CLBP), the most common subjective symptom reported by old people of both sexes in Japan.Methods: In this single-center randomized controlled trial conducted at Teikyo Heisei University, 15 men and women aged ≥ 65 years with low back pain for at least 3 months who met the eligibility criteria were included. The Ex+TrPAcp group received exercise and trigger point acupuncture, while the Ex group received only exercise for 3 months. The main outcome, pain intensity, was measured using the numerical rating scale (NRS). Improvement was defined as a decrease in NRS of ≥ 2 or less than moderate (NRS < 4).Results: The analysis included 7 of 8 cases in the Ex+TrPAcp group and 7 of 7 cases in the Ex group. NRS improved in 6 of 7 and 1 of 7 patients in the intervention and control groups, respectively, with a significant difference between groups (p = 0.03, φ = 0.71). Regarding adverse events due to acupuncture, one patient (14.3%) complained of heaviness after acupuncture. Nothing specific was reported with exercise.Conclusion: Compared with Ex alone, Ex+TrPAcp may be more effective therapy for older people with CLBP who do not have an exercise habit.

  • Research Article2022-02-28

    GB20 Pharmacopuncture As a Potential Method for Brain Drug Delivery via the Perivascular Spaces

    Oxana Semyachkina-Glushkovskaya1,2,*, Inna Blokhina2, Nikita Navolokin2,3, Arina Evsukova2, Georgy Karandin2, Alexander Khorovodov2, Andrey Terskov2, Ivan Fedosov2, Alexander Dubrovsky2, Maria Tzoy2, Vasily Ageev2, Ilana Agranovich2, Valeria Telnova2, Anna Tsven2, Jürgen Kurths1,2,4
    J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2022; 15(1): 43-49 https://doi.org/10.51507/j.jams.2022.15.1.43

    Abstract : Background: The development of new methods of drug brain delivery is a crucial step for the effective therapy of the brain diseases. Pharma- and acupuncture are the forms of alternative therapy of the brain pathology, including an increase in the permeability of blood-brain barrier. However, the mechanisms of pharma- and acupuncture-mediated effects on the brain physiology remain not fully understood. Results: This pilot study on healthy mice clearly demonstrates the Evans Blue spreading in the mouse head and in the brain via the perivascular spaces (PVSs) of the trigeminal structure and the cribriform plate after the dye injection into the Feng Chi point (Galbladder 20, GB20). Conclusion: These results suggest that pharmacopuncture at GB20 can be a perspective method for brain drug delivery via PVSs.

  • Abstract : Background: The primo vascular system can be viewed as a circulatory system that plays a therapeutic function in regenerating the body tissue. The anti-CD3 monoclonal antibody was used as an immunotherapeutic agent to treat the novel coronavirus infection (COVID-19). Objectives: In this study, we observed the effect of injecting lymph nodes with Foralumab, an anti- human CD3 epsilon therapeutic monoclonal antibody, on primo vessels. Methods: The structure and atomic stoichiometry of the antibody were determined by transmission electron microscopy and energy dispersive spectroscopy. Alcian blue dying solution was injected into the lymph nodes of the abdominal vena cava of rabbits, and the solution further flowed into the lymph vessels. Results: A primo vessel with primo nodes stained with Alcian blue was clearly visible in the lymph vessel. By injecting Foralumab into lymph nodes of rabbits with lipopolysaccharide-induced inflammation, the floating primo vessel in the lymph vessel appeared thicker and was distinctly visible. Conclusion: The observation of the primo vessel post-treated with Foralumab in the inflamed lymphatic system suggests the possibility of a functional role of the primo vascular circulatory system in pathophysiological conditions.


Journal Info

April, 2022
Vol.15 No.2

pISSN 2005-2901
eISSN 2093-8152

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  • Research Article2020-10-01

    The Effect of Laser Acupuncture on Spasticity in Children with Spastic Cerebral Palsy

    Dian E. Putri 1, *, Adiningsih Srilestari 1, Kemas Abdurrohim 1, Irawan Mangunatmadja 2, Luh K. Wahyuni 3

    Abstract : Background: Spasticity in cerebral palsy is one of the most common disabilities of children in developing countries. Objectives: The objective of this study was to determine the efficacy of laser acupuncture on spasticity in children with spastic cerebral palsy. Methods: This clinical trial was conducted on 60 patients with spastic cerebral palsy at 2 to 10 years. The patients were categorized into two groups: the control group and treatment group. Laser acupuncture was applied on GV20, GV14, LI4, GB34, and LR3 (power 50 mW, 785 nm, 1 Joule, 40 seconds) three times a week for 12 sessions in the treatment group and placebo laser acupuncture on the same points in the control group. The spasticity was measured using the Modified Ashworth Scale before and after complete sessions. Results: The results showed that there was a significant reduction in the Modified Ashworth Scale score in the treatment group compared with the control group (p = 0.003). Conclusions: This study suggest that laser acupuncture on GV20, GV14, LI4, GB34, and LR3 can reduce spasticity for children with spastic cerebral palsy.

  • Clinical Study Protocol2021-12-31

    Effects of Dry Needling on Connectivity of Corticospinal Tract, Spasticity, and Function of Upper Extremity in People with Stroke: Study Protocol for a Randomized Controlled Trial

    Masoome Ebrahimzadeh1, Noureddin Nakhostin Ansari2,3, Iraj Abdollahi1,*, Behnam Akhbari1, Saeideh Monjezi4
    J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2021; 14(6): 238-243 https://doi.org/10.51507/j.jams.2021.14.6.238

    Abstract : Background: Spasticity is a common motor disorder in adult stroke patients. Injury to the corticospinal tract (CST) is associated with spasticity. Dry needling (DN) has positive impacts on spasticity reduction and improvement in the range of motion (ROM) in stroke patients. This study aims to investigate the effectiveness of DN on the connectivity of the CST and the level of spasticity in adult stroke patients. Methods: This double-blind randomized controlled trial will enroll and randomly assign stroke patients to either the experimental group, for receiving three sessions of DN for the spastic wrist flexors, or the control group, for sham needling. The primary outcome measures will be diffusion tensor imaging and the Modified Modified Ashworth Scale score to assess CST connectivity and wrist flexor spasticity, respectively. The Box and Block Test and standard goniometry are the secondary outcome measures to assess hand dexterity and active and passive wrist ROM, respectively. Measurements will be taken both before and after the intervention. Discussion: The results of this study will provide important evidence of the effects of DN on CST connectivity, spasticity, and arm function in adult stroke patients. Trial registration: This trial is registered in the Iranian Registry of Clinical Trials (IRCT) (https://www.irct.ir; IRCT20191208045649N1).

  • Research Article2020-06-01

    Effectiveness of Manual and Electrical Acupuncture for Chronic Nonspecific Low Back Pain: A Randomized Controlled Trial

    Josielli Comachio 1, *, Carla C. Oliveira 1, Ilton F.R. Silva 1, Mauricio O. Magalhães 1, 2, Amélia P. Marques 1

    Abstract : Background: Low back pain is a common condition that can be effectively treated by acupuncture. However, several treatment point prescriptions and further electrical needle stimulation (i.e., local acupoints, distal acupoints, and sensitized acupoints) may be used. There is an implicit yet unexplored assumption about the evidence on manual and electrical stimulation techniques. Objective: The present study aims to identify effectiveness of electroacupuncture (EA) and manual acupuncture (MA) on pain and disability in patients with chronic nonspecific low back. Methods: This study is a randomized controlled clinical trial. Sixty-six patients between 20 and 60 years of age with non-specific chronic low back pain experiencing low back pain lasting for at least the previous three months and ≥3 points on a 10 numerical analogic scale. Patients diagnosed with chronic LBP were assigned to receive either 12 sessions of MA or EA. The primary outcomes measurements were pain intensity on Numeric Rating Scale and disability by Roland Morris Disability Questionnaire. Results: The participants reported improvements post-treatment to pain intensity and disability respectively; however, no differences between groups were observed. Regarding the secondary outcomes, we observed a between-group difference only for kinesiophobia in favor of the manual acupuncture group (difference = -4.1 points, 95% CI = -7.0 to -1.1). The results were maintained after 3 months of follow-up. Conclusion: The study provides evidence that EA is not superior to MA treatment. Both therapies had similar efficacy in reducing pain and disability for chronic nonspecific low back pain.

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  • Letter to the Editor2021-02-28
  • Research Article2021-04-30

    Acupuncture as a Complementary Therapy for Cancer Care: Acceptability and Preferences of Patients and Informal Caregivers

    Laura Tack1,2, Tessa Lefebvre1,2, Virginie Blieck3, Lieselot Cool1, Hans Pottel5, Koen Van Eygen4, Sofie Derijcke6, Philippe Vergauwe7, Patricia Schofield8, Rebecca Chandler9, Pauline Lane9, Tom Boterberg2, Philip R. Debruyne1,10,*

    Abstract : Background: Acupuncture can effectively manage cancer-related side effects, for both patients undergoing treatment and for cancer survivors. It may also be effective in managing physiological and psychological symptoms common among informal caregivers of cancer patients. Objectives: The aim of this survey was to explore the acceptability and preferences of cancer patients, cancer survivors, and their informal caregivers in relation to acupuncture. Methods: The survey was conducted from 20th November to 27th November 2018. The questionnaire was developed to explore acceptability and preferences, including motivation, symptoms to be addressed, and practical issues (location, cost, etc.), in relation to acupuncture. Results: The survey response rate was 94.5% in cancer patients and cancer survivors and 100% in caregivers. Acceptability of acupuncture was 34.5% (n = 40/116) and 48.0% (n = 26/54) in cancer patients and caregivers, respectively. About 52.5% (n = 21/40) of patients preferred to undergo acupuncture at the day center clinic, whereas caregivers had no specific preference. Patients and cancer survivors would use acupuncture for symptoms of fatigue (60%), listlessness (57.5%), and pain (47.5%). Informal caregivers expressed an interest in using acupuncture for their pain, stress, and sleeping difficulties 48.0% (n = 26/54). Conclusion: Cancer patients, cancer survivors, and informal caregivers would accept acupuncture as a complementary therapy. This openness and preference to acupuncture provide the foundations for this complementary therapy to be incorporated into holistic and supportive cancer care, both for patients and those supporting them.

  • Conference Abstracts2021-06-30
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