Electro-acupuncture upregulates CGRP expression after rat spinal cord transection

Wen Jie Li, Shu Min Li, Ying Ding, Bing He, Jack Keegan, Hongxin Dong, Jing Wen Ruan*, Yuan Shan Zeng

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) plays a variety of important roles within the nervous system. Increasing CGRP expression could improve the survival of injured neurons and prevent neuronal loss. In this study, we first evaluated in vitro the neuroprotective function of CGRP on mechanically injured cerebellar granule neurons (CGNs) of rats. We then verified this result through exogenous administration of CGRP in a spinal cord transected completely in rats. Finally, we investigated the effect of electro-acupuncture (EA) on CGRP expression following the spinal cord transected completely in rats. We found that EA can improve CGRP expression, and exogenous CGRP may promote the survival of injured neurons, both in vivo and in vitro. Our results suggest that CGRP may be a specific neuropeptide expressed in GV-EA treatment of spinal cord injuries (SCI), and that CGRP may play a neuroprotective role in survival of neurons injured mechanically.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1397-1403
Number of pages7
JournalNeurochemistry International
Issue number8
StatePublished - Dec 2012


  • Calcitonin gene-related peptide
  • Cerebellar granule neurons
  • Electro-acupuncture
  • Neuroprotection
  • Spinal cord injury

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Cell Biology


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