Kristen Sparrow • March 08, 2016
Yes. Mice do get depressed when you have them in an unpredictable environment. Acupuncture worked as well as fluoxitine and lowered serum inflammatory markers. Inflammation seems to affect everything. Inflammation is highly affected by vagal activity. Vagal activity is measured by HRV.
Accumulating evidence indicates that inflammation may contribute to the pathophysiology of depression. Acupuncture in traditional Chinese medicine has been considered an effective treatment for depression. However, whether the mechanisms that underlie the antidepressant effect of acupuncture are related to its antiinflammatory properties remains unclear. In the present study, rats were exposed to chronic unpredictable mild stress (CUMS) for 28 days to induce depressive-like behavior. Body weight, sucrose preference, and locomotor activity in the open field were measured. After the behavioral tests, reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction was used to determine the mRNA expression of proinflammatory cytokines (interleukin-1β [fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”] [fusion_builder_row] [fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”] [IL-1β], interleukin-6 [IL-6], and tumor necrosis factor-α [TNF-α]), and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay was used to detect cytokine concentrations. CUMS rats exhibited decrease in body weight, sucrose preference, and locomotor activity in the open field test. Chronic acupuncture and fluoxetine treatment reversed CUMS-induced depressive-like behavior. Compared with control rats, the mRNA and protein expression of IL-1β, IL-6, and TNF-α in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex and cytokine concentrations in serum significantly increased in CUMS rats. Acupuncture and fluoxetine treatment significantly decreased the levels of proinflammatory cytokines in the hippocampus, prefrontal cortex, and serum. These results suggest that acupuncture has antidepressant-like effects, and its mechanism of action appears to involve the inhibition of proinflammatory cytokines.