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Home > Newsletters > April 2009 > Recent Research

Points - Recent Research

Moxibustion for Menopausal Hot Flashes

Local Increase in Trapezius Muscle Oxygenation During and After Acupuncture

Apoptotic Effects of Tian-Long Compound on Endometrial Adenocarcinoma Cells in Vitro

Moxibustion for Menopausal Hot Flashes

Park JE, et al. From the Department of Medical Research, Korea Institute of Oriental Medicine, Daejeon, South Korea; and Department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, School of Medicine, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC.

OBJECTIVE: A hot flash is a general postmenopausal symptom experienced by approximately 75% of climacteric women. Women often turn to complementary and alternative medicines to relieve hot flashes. Moxibustion is one such medication. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of moxibustion on hot flashes in perimenopausal and postmenopausal women. METHODS:: Fifty-one participants were randomly assigned into three groups, namely, moxibustion 1, moxibustion 2, and waiting list (control). The moxibustion groups received 14 sessions of moxibustion treatment for 4 weeks at acupuncture points. Our protocol was supported by evidence from clinical experts (Moxa 1) or published literature (Moxa 2), and we followed all participants for an additional 2 weeks after the end of the study. Our primary outcome measures were frequency and severity of hot flashes. Secondary outcome parameters included quality of life (Menopausal-Specific Quality of Life Scale) and Menopause Rating Scale. RESULTS: Fifty-one women participated in our study. By week 4, the difference in severity and frequency of hot flashes had become statistically significant between the treatment groups and the control participants. In addition, there was a statistically significant difference in Menopausal-Specific Quality of Life Scale scores between treatment group 2 and the other groups. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that moxibustion reduces both the frequency and severity of menopausal hot flashes as compared with those in control participants. We would recommend further studies with larger samples and possibly including placebo controls.

Menopause. 2009 Mar 13.

Source: PubMed


Local Increase in Trapezius Muscle Oxygenation During and After Acupuncture

Ohkubo M, Hamaoka T, Niwayama M, Murase N, Osada T, Kime R, Kurosawa Y, Sakamoto A, Katsumura T.

ABSTRACT: This study aimed to compare the trapezius muscle blood volume and oxygenation in the stimulation region and in a distant region in the same muscle during acupuncture stimulation (AS). We hypothesized that AS provokes a localized increase in muscle blood volume and oxygenation in the stimulation region. Two sets of near-infrared spectrometer (NIRS) probes, with 40-mm light-source detector spacing, were placed on the right trapezius muscle, with a 50-mm distance between the probes. Changes in muscle oxygenation (oxy-Hb) and blood volume (t-Hb) in stimulation and distant regions (50 mm away from the stimulation point) were measured using NIRS in 9 and 10 healthy acupuncture-experienced subjects for the experiment as the AS group and as the control group (no AS), respectively. Measurements began with a 3-min rest period, followed by "Jakutaku" (AS) for 2 min, and recovery after stimulation. There was a significant increase in oxy-Hb (60.7 muM at maximum) and t-Hb (48.1 muM at maximum) in the stimulation region as compared to the distant region. In the stimulation region, a significant increase in oxy-Hb and t-Hb compared with the pre-stimulation level was first noted at 58.5 s and 13.5 s, respectively, after the onset of stimulation. In conclusion, oxygenation and blood volume increased, indicating elevated blood flow to the small vessels, not in the distant region used in this study, but in the stimulation region of the trapezius muscle during and after a 2-min AS.

Dyn Med. 2009 Mar 16;8(1):2.

Source: PubMed


Apoptotic Effects of Tian-Long Compound on Endometrial Adenocarcinoma Cells in Vitro

Li ZL, et al. Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Osaka Medical College, 2-7 Daigaku-machi, Takatsuki, Osaka, 569-8686, Japan.

The Tian-Long (TL) compound is a water-soluble extract of six Chinese medicinal herbs. To explore its antitumor properties and the mechanism for activity in gynecological malignancies, the present studies were carried out using Ishikawa cells derived from uterine endometrial adenocarcinoma. Morphologically, cell death and decrease in the number of viable cells were observed in the presence of the TL compound. The proliferation of Ishikawa cells was significantly suppressed in a time- and dose-dependent manner, as indicated by both the WST-1 and the BrdU incorporation assay. Results from both the WST-1 and the BrdU incorporation assay demonstrated that the compound could inhibit the cell proliferation despite the presence of 17beta-estradiol in the medium. It is generally noted that the disturbance in mitochondrial function and DNA synthesis during cell proliferation can result in apoptosis. Being consistent with this notion, redistribution of the plasma membrane phosphatidylserine was identified with fluoromicroscopy and flow cytometry. Analysis of the fluorescent patterns of JC-1 staining revealed depolarization of the mitochondrial membrane in the exposed cells. Moreover, the amount of Bcl-2 enhanced in the presence of 17beta-estradiol was repressed by the compound. The present results indicate that the ingredients of TL compound are very promising for use in the treatment of endometrial adenocarcinoma. Further studies are necessary to elucidate the therapeutic mechanisms in its antitumor activity.

Med Mol Morphol. 2009 Mar;42(1):32-9.

Source: PubMed


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