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Table 6 Original investigations of acupuncture therapy effects in morphine-dependent subjects

From: Acupuncture therapy for drug addiction

Publication year; first author Objectives Subjects Stimulated acupoints (acupuncture type, acupoints, frequency) Assessments Outcomes
2000 Wang [75] To observe the effect of peripheral electric stimulation (PES) on morphine-induced Conditioned place preference CPP 57/82 Male Sprague–Dawley rats 2 and 100 Hz PES at Zusanli (ST36) and Sanyinjiao (SP6) for 30 min Conditioned place preference 2 Hz PES could specifically inhibit the expression of morphine-induced CPP
2003 Shi [70] To examine the effect of 100 Hz peripheral electric stimulation (PES) on the expression of morphine-induced CPP 48 Male Sprague–Dawley rats 100 Hz PES at Zusanli (ST36) and Sanyinjiao (SP6), 30 min a day for 3 days Conditioned place preference Repeated 100 Hz PES had anti-craving effects by activating supra-segmental δ- and κ-opioid receptors
2004 Shi [71] To elucidate if preproenkephalin (PPE) and preprodynorphin (PPD) mRNAs in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) play a role in PES suppressing morphine-induced CPP 48 Male Sprague–Dawley rats 2 and 100 Hz PES at Zusanli (ST36) and Sanyinjiao (SP6), 30 min a day for 3 days Conditioned place preference PES suppressed both the expression of morphine-induced CPP and the reinstatement of extinguished CPP
2004 Cui [27] To investigate the effect of EA on the sexual behavior of male rats undergoing morphine withdrawal 41 Male Sprague–Dawley rats 2 and 100 Hz EA at Zusanli (ST36) and Sanyinjiao (SP6), 30 min a day for 7 days Total serum testosterone (TST) concentrations EA facilitated the recovery of male sexual behavior and increased TST concentrations
2005 Kim [41] To investigate the effect of acupuncture on repeated morphine-induced changes in extracellular dopamine levels 31 Male Sprague–Dawley rats Acupuncture at Shenmen (HT7) for 1 min Dopamine release in the nucleus accumbens and behavioral hyperactivity Acupuncture decreased both dopamine release in the nucleus accumbens and behavioral hyperactivity
2005 Liu [54] To evaluate the effect of EA on morphine withdrawal signs and c-Fos expression of the amygdala 21 Male Sprague–Dawley rats 100 Hz EA at Shenshu (BL23) for 30 min Corticosterone levels and behavioral responses during EA stimulation EA significantly reduced the signs of morphine withdrawal
2008 Chu [25] To observe the effect of EA on chronic morphine-induced neuronal morphological changes in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) 12 Male Sprague–Dawley rats 2 and 100 Hz EA at Zusanli (ST36) and Sanyinjiao (SP6), 30 min for 3 days The rough endoplasmic reticulum, membrane configuration of the nucleus and mitochondria, and structure of myelin sheath EA reversed the morphological alterations induced by chronic morphine administration
2009 Hu [34] To examine alterations in the firing rate of Dopamine neurons in 100 Hz EA treatment 40 Male Sprague–Dawley rats 100 Hz EA at Zusanli (ST36) and Sanyinjiao (SP6), 30 min for 10 days Conditioned place preference EA was effective for the treatment of opiate addiction by normalizing the activity of VTA DA neurons
2010 Liang [53] To find the Role of enkephalin in the nucleus accumbens mediating the effects of EA 218 Male Sprague–Dawley rats 2 Hz EA at Zusanli (ST36) and Sanyinjiao (SP6), 30 min for 1-3 days Conditioned place preference EA up-regulated the mRNA level of preproenkephalin in the NAc
2010 Lee [45] To investigate the effect of acupuncture on morphine-induced behavioral sensitization and the neuronal changes in NAc and striatum 14 Male Sprague–Dawley rats Acupuncture at Shenmen (HT7), 1 min for 3 days Morphine-induced changes of locomotor activity and Fos expression acupuncture suppressed the morphine-induced increases in the locomotor activity and Fos expression in the NAc and striatum
2011 Li [48] To observe whether EA could modulate the immune status of morphine dependence and withdrawal mice 40 Male BALB/c mice 2 Hz EA at Zusanli (ST36) and Sanyinjiao (SP6), 30 min for 5 days Splenic T Lymphocyte Proliferation, IL-2 Production, CD4+/CD8+ Ratio EA raised IL-2 and normalized chronic morphine exposure-induced immune dysfunctions
2011 Li [51] To investigate the effect of 2 and 100 Hz EA of the sleep disturbance during morphine withdrawal 15 Male Sprague–Dawley rats 2 and 100 Hz EA at Zusanli (ST36) and Sanyinjiao (SP6), 30 min twice a day for 3 days Electroencephalogram and electromyogram EA decreased NREM/REM and total sleep time, while the sleep latency prolonged significantly during acute morphine withdrawal
2011 Wang [76] To find the optimum protocol for EA effective for alleviating withdrawal syndrome 40 Male Sprague–Dawley rats 100 Hz EA at Zusanli (ST36) and Sanyinjiao (SP6) for 30 min Conditioned place preference EA down-regulated of p-CREB and accelerated of dynorphin synthesis in spinal cord
2011 Xia [81] To investigate whether EA by itself will produce some rewarding effect 44 Male Sprague–Dawley rats 2 Hz EA at Zusanli (ST36) and Sanyinjiao (SP6) for 30 min Conditioned place preference EA was capable of inducing CPP in the rat via the activation of the endogenous opioid-, cannabinoid- and dopamine-systems
2012 Lee [47] To investigate the role of acupuncture in the reinstatement of morphine seeking 15 Male Sprague–Dawley rats Acupuncture, Yanggu (SI5) or Yangxi (LI5) for 1 min Morphine reinstatement acupuncture attenuated the reinstatement of morphine seeking behavior by blocking the GABA receptor antagonists
2013 Lee [46] To investigate whether acupuncture could suppress the reinstatement of morphine-seeking behavior 28 Male Sprague–Dawley rats Acupuncture, Yanggu (SI5) or Yangxi (LI5) or Zusanli (ST36) for 1 min Morphine-seeking behavior acupuncture suppressed morphine injection perfectly
  1. Acupoints in NADA protocol are located at (sympathetic: in the deltoid fossa at the junction of the infra-antihelix crus and the medial order of the helix, lung: in the center of the cavum concha, liver: located in the posterior to upper portion of the helix crus, kidney: in the cleft between the upper plateau, and the helix)