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The Journal of Internal Korean Medicine > Volume 34(2); 2013 > Article
The Journal of Internal Korean Medicine 2013;34(2): 113-121.
Effect of Acupuncture on the Expressions of Neuropeptide Y and Leptin Receptor in the Hypothalamus of Food-deprived Rats
Mi-a Kim1, Woo-sang Jung1, Sang-kwan Moon1, Young-suk Kim1, Chang-ju Kim2, Ki-ho Cho1
1Dept. of Cardiovascular and Neurologic Diseases(Stroke center), College of Oriental Medicine, Kyung-Hee University
2Dept. of physiology, college of Medicine, Kyung-Hee University
Correspondence  Ki-ho Cho ,Tel: 02-958-9134, Email: hyuntemia@hanmail.net
  Published online: June 30, 2013.
ABSTRACT
Objectives:
This study aimed to find out whether acupuncture at various acupoints shows any effects on appetite by regulating neurotransmitters in the hypothalamus through the expression of NPY and LR in the PVN via immunohistochemistry.

Methods :
Male Sprague-Dawley rats were divided into eight groups of five mice each. The rats in the acupuncture groups were treated with acupuncture at respective acupoints, twice per a day for 3 days. The animals were sacrificed 72 h after commencement of the experiment, the brains being dissected into serial coronal sections. Expressions of neuropeptide Y and leptin receptor in the hypothalamus were assessed by immunohistochemistry.

Results:
NPY expression in the PVN was enhanced and LR expression in the PVN was decreased by food deprivation. NPY immunoreactivity in the PVN of the food-derived rats was decreased by acupuncture at the auricular acupoint, Zusanli-acupoint, a and non-acupoint. However, acupuncture at the auricular acupoint showed most potent suppressing effect on NPY expression in the PVN of food-deprived rats. LR expression in the PVN decreased following food deprivation, and auricular acupuncture increased LR expression in the PVN of food-deprived rats. In normal conditions (fed state), LR expression in the PVN was not changed by acupuncture treatment at several sites.

Conclusions:
From this study, we have shown that acupuncture at the auricular acupoint exerts the most potent appetite suppressing effect on the food restriction state.
Key words: acupuncture, appetite, neuropeptide Y and leptin R in the hypothalamus
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