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Journal of Chinese Integrative Medicine ›› 2011, Vol. 9 ›› Issue (8): 871-877.doi: 10.3736/jcim20110809

• Original Experimental Research • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Effects of Chinese herbal medicines for regulating liver qi on expression of 5-hydroxytryptamine 3B receptor in hypothalamic tissues of rats with anger emotion

Qing-fang Ge, Hui-yun Zhang ()   

  1. Key Laboratory of Classics Theory of Traditional Chinese Medicine of the Ministry of Education of China, Shandong University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Jinan 250355, China
  • Received:2011-03-31 Accepted:2011-04-28 Online:2011-08-20 Published:2011-08-15

Objective: To explore the central mechanisms of anger emotion and the effects of Chinese herbal medicines for regulating liver qi on the anger emotion and the expression level of 5-hydroxytryptamine 3B receptor (5-HT3BR) in rat hypothalamus.
Methods: Rat models of anger-in or anger-out emotions were prepared by the methods of resident intruder paradigm. There were five groups in this study: control, anger-in model, Jingqianshu Granule-treated anger-in, anger-out model and Jingqianping Granule-treated anger-out groups. The treatment groups were orally given Jingqianshu granules and Jingqianping granules respectively, and the model groups and the normal control group were given sterile water. Open-field test and sucrose preference test were used to evaluate behavioristics of the rats. Semi-quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction and Western blot methods were used to detect the expression levels of 5-HT3BR mRNA and protein in the rat hypothalamus.
Results: The expression of 5-HT3BR in hypothalamus of anger-in model rats increased obviously (P<0.01) and that of anger-out model rats decreased obviously (P<0.01) compared with the normal control group. Compared with the model group, the expressions of 5-HT3BR in the treatment groups were significantly improved (P<0.01) after treatment, and recovered to normal level.
Conclusion: The anger-in stimulation obviously increases hypothalamic 5-HT3BR expression and the anger-out emotion can obviously reduce its expression. Chinese herbal medicines for regulating liver qi may treat anger emotion in rats by improving the hypothalamic 5-HT3BR protein and gene expression levels.

Key words: anger-in, anger-out, hypothalamic, 5-hydroxytryptamine 3B receptor, drugs,Chinese herbal, rats

Table 1

Primer sequences and the product lengths for PCR analysis"

Target gene Forward primer and reverse primer Fragment length (bp) Annealing temperature (℃) Cycles

Figure 1

Results of open-field test and sucrose preference test in anger-in groups A: Results of open-field test scores; B: Results of sucrose preference test. *P<0.05, vs control group. Data are represtented as x±s, n=10."

Figure 2

Results of open-field test and sucrose preference test in anger-out groups A: Results of open-field test scores; B: Results of sucrose preference test. *P<0.05, vs control group; △P<0.05, vs administration group. Data are represtented as x±s, n=10."

Figure 3

Expressions of 5-HT3BR mRNA and protein in hypothalamic tissues of rats A. Graph of reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction; B: Graph of Western blotting. M: Marker; 1: Control group; 2: Anger-in group; 3: Anger-in plus Jingqianshu group; 4: Anger-out group; 5: Anger-out plus Jingqianping group. 5-HT3BR: 5-hydroxytryptamine 3B receptor."

Table 2

Relative expression levels of 5-HT3BR mRNA and protein in hypothalamic tissues of rats ($\bar{x}$±s)"

Groups n Relative level of 5-HT3BR mRNA Relative level of 5-HT3BR protein
Control 10 0.604±0.025 0.555±0.036
Anger-in 10 0.815±0.010** 0.889±0.017**
Anger-in plus
10 0.585±0.007▲▲ 0.552±0.049▲▲
Anger-out 10 0.230±0.017** 0.488±0.034*
Anger-out plus
10 0.578±0.037□□ 0.574±0.032
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