Combined treatment with acupuncture reduces effective dose and alleviates adverse effect of L-dopa by normalizing Parkinson's disease-induced neurochemical imbalance.
This study first showed the behavioural benefits of novel combination therapy of L-dopa with acupuncture on Parkinson's disease, and its underlying mechanisms within basal ganglia. The previous study reported that acupuncture may improve the motor function of a Parkinson's disease (PD) mouse model by increasing the dopamine efflux and turnover ratio of dopamine. Hence, we hypothesised that combining L-dopa with acupuncture would have a behavioural benefit for those with PD. We performed unilateral injections of 6-OHDA into the striatum of C57Bl/6 mice to model hemi-Parkinsonian attributes. To test motor function and dyskinetic anomalies, we examined cylinder behaviour and abnormal involuntary movement (AIM), respectively. We found that (1) a 50% reduced dose of L-dopa (7.5 mg/kg) combined with acupuncture showed an improvement in motor function that was comparable to mice given the standard dose of L-dopa treatment (15 mg/kg) only, and that (2) the combination treatment (L-dopa +acupuncture) was significantly superior in reducing AIM scores when equivalent doses of L-dopa were used. The combination treatment also significantly reduces the abnormal increase of GABA contents in the substantia nigra compared to the standard L-dopa treatment. Furthermore, abnormal expression of FosB, the immediate early gene of L-dopa induced dyskinesia (LID), was mitigated in the striatum by the combination treatment. All of these results indicate that acupuncture enhances the benefits of L-dopa on motor function with reduced dose of L-dopa and alleviating LID by normalising neurochemical imbalance within the basal ganglia.
Kim, S-N; Doo, A-R; Park, J-Y; Choo, HJ; Shim, I; Park, JJ; Chae, Y; Lee, B; Lee, H; Park, H-J
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