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Home > Newsletters > April 2010 > Recent Research

Points - Recent Research

Current Evidence of Acupuncture on Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
Fo Shou San, an Ancient Herbal Decoction, Stimulates the Production of Hemoglobin and Erythropoietin in Cultured Cells
Comparison of the Immunoregulatory Function of Different Constituents in Radix Astragali and Radix Hedysari

Current Evidence of Acupuncture on Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome

Lim CE, et al. Faculty of Medicine, South Western Sydney Clinical School, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia.

Objective. This paper aims to provide a literature review on evaluating the efficacy of acupuncture therapy in the treatment of polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) by reviewing clinical trials; randomised and non-randomised and observational studies on PCOS. The paper will also determine the possible mechanism of acupuncture treatment in PCOS, limitations of recruited studies and suggest further improvements in future studies. Design. A comprehensive literature search was conducted through the databases Medline, PubMed, EMBASE, Cochrane, AMED (Allied and Complementary Medicine), NCCAM (The National Centre for Complementary and Alternative Medicine) to identify relevant monographs. Results. Four studies were recruited. Several studies showed that acupuncture significantly increases beta-endorphin levels for periods up to 24 h and may have regulatory effect on FSH, LH and androgen. Beta-endorphin increased levels secondary to acupuncture affects the hyperthalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis through promoting the release of ACTH through stimulation of its precursor pro-opiomelanocortin synthesis. Inclusion criteria. All available acupuncture studies on human subjects with PCOS from June 1970 to June 2009. Exclusion criteria. Studies not meeting the inclusion criteria, published in languages other than English or animal studies. Conclusion. Acupuncture is a safe and effective treatment to PCOS as the adverse effects of pharmacologic interventions are not expected by women with PCOS. Acupuncture therapy may have a role in PCOS by: increasing of blood flow to the ovaries, reducing of ovarian volume and the number of ovarian cysts, controlling hyperglycaemia through increasing insulin sensitivity and decreasing blood glucose and insulin levels, reducing cortisol levels and assisting in weight loss and anorexia. However, well-designed, randomised controlled trials are needed to elucidate the true effect of acupuncture on PCOS.

Gynecol Endocrinol. 2010 Mar 16.

Source: PubMed

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Fo Shou San, an Ancient Herbal Decoction, Stimulates the Production of Hemoglobin and Erythropoietin in Cultured Cells

Bi CW, et al. Department of Biology and Center for Chinese Medicine, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong, PR China.

Fo Shou San (FSS) is an ancient herbal decoction comprised of Rhizoma Chuanxiong (RC; Chuanxiong) and Radix Angelicae Sinensis (RAS; Danggui) in a ratio of 2 : 3. It is mainly prescribed for patients having a blood deficiency. This combination is considered the most popular herb pair among Chinese medicines; however, the rationale of having these two chemically similar herbs within the decoction has historically not been made clear. Here, we attempted to reveal the chemical and biological properties of this decoction as a means to deduce its mechanism of action. The effects of FSS were determined in different cell culture models. With respect to stimulation of blood circulation, FSS inhibited ADP-mediated platelet aggregation in a dose-dependent manner. In order to reveal the hematopoietic effect of this decoction, FSS was applied onto cultured K562 human leukemia cells and Hep3B human hepatocellular carcinoma cells. Application of FSS in cultured K562 cells inhibited cell proliferation and subsequently induced the production of hemoglobin. Additionally, the mRNA expression of erythropoietin (EPO) was induced in a dose-dependent manner when FSS was applied to Hep3B cells. The current results reveal the effects of FSS in different cell models, paving a direction for mechanistic studies.

Planta Med. 2010 Mar 22.

Source: PubMed

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Comparison of the Immunoregulatory Function of Different Constituents in Radix Astragali and Radix Hedysari 

Liu J, et al.School of Chinese Medicine, Hong Kong Baptist University, Kowloon Tong, Kowloon, Hong Kong.

Radix Astragali (RA), known as "Huangqi" in China, is one of the most popular herbal medicines known worldwide to reinforce "Qi". RA is traditionally prepared from the dried roots of Astragalus membranaceus (MJHQ) and A. membranaceus var. mongholicus (MGHQ). Radix Hedysari is named "Hongqi" (HQ), which is similar to RA. We assessed and compared the chemical constituents and bioactivity of RA and HQ. Different constituents were extracted into five major parts and were analyzed using different methods. Comparison of the immunological effects of extracts was done by using two immunological models. Results showed that flavonoids and saponins present in RA and HQ were not only structurally significantly different but also different in their immunological effect. Amino acids extract (AE) in MGHQ shows immunological effect while AE in MJHQ and HQ did not. Polysaccharides comprised the major constituents in RA and HQ. All polysaccharides extract (PE) of the three herbs showed similar levels of immunological effect in both immunological assays.

J Biomed Biotechnol. 2010:479426. Epub 2010 Mar 9.

Source: PubMed

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