Electrical stimulation modulates the amphetamine-induced hemodynamic changes: An fMRI study to compare the effect of stimulating locations and frequencies on rats
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UNLABELLED: Our previous fMRI and microdialysis measurements showed that electroacupuncture (EA) at LI4 was effective in alleviating excessive cerebral dopamine release induced by d-amphetamine (AMPH) in rats. We now compare the effect of EA in adjusting excess dopamine release at two stimulating frequencies (2 Hz versus 100 Hz at LI4) and at two acupoints (forepaw (LI4) versus hindpaw (ST36), at 2 Hz). fMRI measurements of relative cerebral blood volume (rCBV) were used to monitor the brain activity of "rest", followed by AMPH challenge, 10 min "rest", and then 20 min of EA. RESULTS: EA at LI4 and ST36 significantly attenuated the AMPH-induced rCBV increases in the striatum, S1 cortex, and thalamus. Frequency: EA at 100 Hz induced greater attenuation of rCBV than EA at 2 Hz in the S1, insula, anterior cingulate cortices, dorsolateral striatum, and thalamus. Acupoints: EA at LI4 modulated a broader area in the medial anterior striatum while EA at ST36 modulated a more site-specific area in the dorsolateral striatum. In the thalamus, EA at LI4 showed greater attenuating effect than EA at ST36 did. However, in the insular cortex, EA at ST36 showed stronger attenuation. CONCLUSION: EA at both LI4 and ST36 was effective in restoring dopamine homeostasis from an excess state, with the most effective response at LI4 with 100 Hz, while the responses to 2Hz EA at LI4 and ST36 showed slightly different spatial distribution of MR signal. This therefore provided insight into the neurophysiological basis of electroacupuncture effects in cortical and subcortical circuits.