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Effects of acute millimeter wave exposure on the expression of substance P and c-fos in rat spinal cord

Keywords: millimeter wave , spinal cord , substance P , genes , fos

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Abstract:

Objective  To observe the expression changes in substance P (SP) and c-fos in rat spinal cord after acute millimeter-wave (MMW) exposure, and explore the mechanism of thermal hyperalgesia at the spinal level. Methods  The back skin of SD rats was exposed to 35 GHz MMW (40W/cm2) for 0s (control group), 30s, 1min, or 3min. The corresponding segment of the spinal cord was taken at 0min, 5min, 10min, 1h and 3h after MMW irradiation for total RNA and protein extraction. The expressions of SP and c-fos mRNA were measured by real-time RT-PCR, and the expression of c-fos protein was detected by Western blotting. Results  No significant difference was found between the control group and irradiation groups in SP and c-fos mRNA expression in the corresponding segment of spinal cord after MMW irradiation for 30s. After MMW irradiation for 1min, the SP and c-fos mRNA expressions in the corresponding segment of spinal cord increased significantly at 10min time point, and then decreased to the level of control group. After MMW irradiation for 3min, the SP and c-fos mRNA expression in the corresponding segment of spinal cord increased significantly at 5min, 10min and 1h time points, and decreased to the level of control group at 3h. No significant change was found in c-fos protein expression in the corresponding segment of spinal cord after MMW irradiation for 30s and 1min. After MMW irradiation for 3min, the c-fos protein expression in the corresponding segment of spinal cord increased significantly at 5min and 10min time point, and then decreased to the level of control group. Conclusion  The increase of SP expression in rat skin after MMW irradiation may be related to the increase of SP and c-fos expressions in the corresponding segment of the spinal cord induced by thermal pain stimulation.

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