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2022, Vol. 26 ›› Issue (23): 3615-3619

Effect of moxibustion pretreatment on autophagy and NLRP3 inflammasome expression in cerebral ischemia-reperfusion model rats

Jiang Jie1, 2, Zhao Baixiao2, Chen Libin1, Wen Li1, Zhang Shanshan1, Ma Jie1, Zhao Hua1   

  1. 1Xinjiang Medical University College of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Urumqi 830054, Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, China; 2School of Acupuncture and Tuina, Beijing University of Chinese Medicine, Beijing 102488, China

  • Received:2021-07-17 Accepted:2021-10-11 Online:2022-08-18 Published:2022-02-15

  • Contact: Zhao Hua, Professor, Xinjiang Medical University College of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Urumqi 830054, Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, China

  • About author:Jiang Jie, Master, Lecturer, Xinjiang Medical University College of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Urumqi 830054, Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, China; School of Acupuncture and Tuina, Beijing University of Chinese Medicine, Beijing 102488, China

  • Supported by:

    the National Natural Science Foundation of China, No. 81460741 (to ZH); the Natural Science Foundation of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, No. 2019D01C203 (to JJ); Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region University Scientific Research Program, No. XJEDU2021Y025 (to JJ)


Abstract: BACKGROUND: Moxibustion as one of the Chinese medicine therapies has shown significant clinical efficacy in the prevention and treatment of stroke.
OBJECTIVE: To explore the effect of moxibustion pretreatment on autophagy and NLRP3 inflammasome expression in rats with cerebral ischemia reperfusion.
METHODS: Thirty-six Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into sham operation group, model group, and moxibustion pretreatment group, with 12 rats in each group. The moxibustion pretreatment group was given moxibustion at Baihui, Dazhui, and Zusanli before modeling. Each acupoint was given moxibustion for 3 strengths, once a day for 7 days. In the model and moxibustion pretreatment groups, the rat model of middle cerebral artery occlusion was made by suturing of the middle cerebral artery 30 minutes after the last moxibustion. After 2 hours of cerebral ischemia, the middle artery suture was removed and the rats were reperfused for 12 hours. In the sham operation group, only the common carotid artery, internal carotid artery, and external carotid artery were dissected without suturing the middle cerebral artery. The neurological deficit score was assessed, the cerebral infarct volume was calculated using 2,3,5-triphenyltetrazolium chloride staining, and the expression levels of autophagy-related proteins Beclin1, p62 and NLRP3 inflammasome in cerebral cortex ischemic area were detected using western blot assay.
RESULTS AND CONCLUSION: The neurological deficit score in the model group was significantly higher than that in the sham operation group (P < 0.01), and the neurological deficit score of the moxibustion pretreatment group was significantly lower than that of the model group (P < 0.01). 2,3,5-Triphenyltetrazolium chloride staining results showed that there were no obvious infarcts in the brain tissue of rats in the sham operation group, and obvious ischemic lesions were detected in the right brain tissue of rats in the model and moxibustion pretreatment groups. The infarct volume in the moxibustion pretreatment group was significantly less than that in the model group (P < 0.01). Western blot results showed that compared with the sham operation group, the protein expression of Beclin1 and NLRP3 was significantly increased in the model and moxibustion pretreatment groups (P < 0.01), while the expression of p62 protein decreased (P < 0.01). Compared with the model group, the expression of Beclin1 protein was significantly increased (P < 0.05), and the expression of p62 and NLRP3 proteins was significantly decreased in the moxibustion pretreatment group (P < 0.01). To conclude, moxibustion pretreatment can significantly improve the neurological function of rats after cerebral ischemia-reperfusion, and its mechanism may be related to the activation of autophagy and inhibition of the expression of inflammatory factors.
Key words: moxibustion pretreatment, ischemia-reperfusion, autophagy, Beclin1, p62, NLRP3 inflammasome

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