|Contact Information |
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Fax: (404) 752-1164
|Research Interests |
Natriuretic peptides (ANP, BNP, CNP; NPs), synthesized and released in the eye, contribute to steady-state modulation of aqueous humor dynamics, but mechanisms of NPs release and roles require delineation. Acupuncture has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine to treat a wide range of diseases and conditions including pain and cerebro-vascular accidents. However, the effects of electroacupuncture (EA) stimulation on aqueous humor dynamics, such as intraocular pressure (IOP), aqueous humor inflow/outflow, and neuronal/retinal function have not been investigated. Research in this laboratory has revealed that low frequency EA elevated aqueous BNP levels associated with lowered IOP bilaterally in rabbits. To understand the ocular action of EA, the mechanisms of elevated NPs activity will be examined. Hypotheses: Natriuretic peptide activity, induced by EA, regulates, in part, aqueous humor dynamics through interaction with the cellular functions of sympathetic neurons, ciliary body, and trabecular meshwork. Specific Aims: 1) Determine the mechanisms and sites of action of NPs activity induced by EA, and 2) Determine the cellular mechanisms of NPs activity by EA. Accomplishment of these specific aims will involve: I) performance of radioimmunoassays for NPs levels in aqueous humor samples and ocular tissue extracts, especially the iris-ciliary body, II) correlation of NPs activity with changes in IOP and aqueous inflow/outflow as quantified by tonometry, fluorophotometry and two-stage constant perfusion, respectively, and III) analyses of signal transduction pathways and gene expression that mediate EA-induced NPs activity in the aqueous humor, ciliary body, and outflow tract(s). The outcomes of this research project will: a) define the role(s) of NPs in the physiological regulation of aqueous humor dynamics, b) determine the cellular mode(s) by which EA can increase NPs activity at critical sites, and c) provide a rationale for neuroendocrine approaches in the therapy of glaucoma.
Teh-Ching Chu, PhD, LAc, is an Associate Professor of Pharmacology and Toxicology at Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia. Dr. Chu received his MS and PhD in Physiology/Biophysics from University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky. His postdoctoral research was at Department of Physiology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. He is Board certified in Oriental Medicine (Acupuncture, Herbology, Asian Massage and Cosmetic Acupuncture) with Acupuncture licensure in Georgia. He started at Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Morehouse School of Medicine, 1991. His professional membership includes American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics.
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