Author(s): Dow J, Painovich J, Hale SL, TjenALooi S, Longhurst JC, , Dow J, Painovich J, Hale SL, TjenALooi S, Longhurst JC,
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Some studies have suggested that certain Chinese herbal remedies and acupuncture could limit ischemia/reperfusion damage. We sought to determine whether the commonly used single herb Danshen (DS), either alone or in combination with Jiang Xiang (JX), or electroacupuncture (EA) reduces myocardial infarct size. METHODS: An anesthetized rat model of proximal left coronary artery occlusion (30 minutes) and reperfusion (180 minutes) was used to measure infarct size (triphenyltetrazolium chloride) and ischemic risk zone (blue dye technique). Rats were either untreated (saline) or received an infusion of DS or DS + JX, starting 30 minutes prior to coronary occlusion. In a separate protocol, rats were untreated, received static needle (ND) placement without stimulation or EA at P5-P6 acupuncture points in the rat forearm starting 5 minutes before occlusion and lasting for 40 minutes, or starting 30 minutes before occlusion and lasting for 90 minutes. RESULTS: In the herbal experiments, myocardial infarct size expressed as a fraction of the ischemic risk zone was 0.43 ± 0.06 in controls, 0.39 ± 0.05 in the DS group, and 0.42 ± 0.04 in the Danshen + JX groups (P = not significant [NS]). In the acupuncture study, there was no significant difference in infarct size as a fraction of the risk zone among the control group (0.38 ± 0.04), the ND group (0.47 ± 0.04), or the EA group (0.32 ± 0.05). When EA was started 30 minutes prior to coronary occlusion and continued for 30 minutes into reperfusion, infarct size was 0.41 ± 0.07 in controls and 0.38 ± 0.10 in EA (P = NS). Neither herbs nor EA altered heart rate or blood pressure. In a separate study of 5 minutes of coronary occlusion plus reperfusion, EA failed to reduce ventricular arrhythmias. CONCLUSION: Our studies do not suggest a cardioprotective effect of DS or DS + JX or EA in an experimental model of myocardial ischemia/reperfusion.
This article was published in J Cardiovasc Pharmacol Ther
and referenced in Journal of Traditional Medicine & Clinical Naturopathy