Ok, let’s talk biology for a minute. Chronic pain, stress, immune system, mood and emotions are all controlled by the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal pathway otherwise known as the HPA Axis. The adrenal glands, in particular, are responsible for releasing cortisol into the blood stream in times of stress. Long term stress and higher cortisol levels can lead to other health problems such as depression.

Many people have reported benefits through the use of acupuncture, but this is the first time acupuncture has been used with the HPA Axis in animals. Thanks to the help of rats, researchers at Georgetown University have been able to document stress relief. The studies in rats revealed that they have the same pain and stress sensors as do humans. Applying acupuncture at the stomach meridian point 36 (St36) successfully relieved stress. This was measured by lower levels of stress hormones in the blood stream.

Since many anti-depressants and anti-anxiety drugs target the HPA Axis, researchers hope these studies  will lay the groundwork for treatments in the clinical setting.

Read more at www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2015/07/acupuncture-hits-same-biologic-pathways-rats-pain-drugs-target-humans?et_cid=4686921&et_rid=748938987&location=top

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