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Spinal Glutamate Transporters Are Involved in the Development of Electroacupuncture Tolerance

BACKGROUND:

Electroacupuncture (EA) tolerance is a gradual decline in EA antinociception because of its repeated or prolonged use. This study aims to explore the role of spinal glutamate transporters (GTs) in EA tolerance (EAT).

METHODS:

Rats were treated with EA once per day for eight consecutive days, and their L4-5 spinal cords were collected at days 0, 2, 4, 6 and 8. The levels of three spinal GTs and their mRNAs were detected with Western blot and pPCR, respectively. Then, riluzole, a positive GT regulator, was administered intrathecally in order to observe its effect on EA analgesia after repeated EA.

RESULTS:

The expression levels of the spinal GTs increased at days 2 and 4, and gradually decreased as the times of EA increased. At day 8, no difference was observed in the spinal GTs between the sham treatment and the EA treatment. Intrathecal administration of riluzole dose-dependently attenuated the decreased EA analgesia.

CONCLUSION:

These results indicated the participation of the spinal GTs in EAT.

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S1614 Riluzole Riluzole is a glutamate release inhibitor with neuroprotective, anticonvulsant, anxiolytic and anesthetic qualities. (3) (2)

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