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Acupuncture, Exercise May Help Insulin Sensitivity in PCOS

Correction of defects in adipose tissue gene expression also seen in animal study

MONDAY, April 14 (HealthDay News) -- Low-frequency electro-acupuncture and exercise both improve insulin sensitivity and correct defects in adipose tissue gene expression in a rat model of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), according to study findings published online April 3 in Endocrinology.

Louise Manneras, from Goteborg University in Sweden, and colleagues treated a rat model of PCOS (induced by dihydrotestosterone) with low-frequency electro-acupuncture, physical exercise, or no treatment for four to five weeks.

The researchers found that both electro-acupuncture and exercise improved insulin sensitivity. Electro-acupuncture increased plasma insulin-like growth factor and restored proper expression of leptin and uncoupling protein 2 in visceral adipose tissue. Exercise reduced adiposity, visceral adipocyte size and plasma leptin, and normalized adipose tissue leptin and interleukin-6 expression in visceral adipose tissue.

"Thus, electro-acupuncture and exercise ameliorate insulin resistance in rats with polycystic ovary syndrome," Manneras and colleagues conclude. "This effect may involve regulation of adipose tissue metabolism and production since electro-acupuncture and exercise each partly restore divergent adipose tissue gene expression associated with insulin resistance, obesity and inflammation."

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