Protective effects on the stomach mucous membrane by Moxibustion against stress gastric ulcer is known. The potential mechanism of moxibustion may be mediated by transforming growth factor-α, gastric mucosa cell proliferation, inhibition of apoptosis, and the expression of heat shock protein-70.
Previous studies have shown that somatic sensation by acupuncture and visceral nociceptive stimulation can converge in the nucleus tractus solitarii (NTS) where neurons integrate signals impacting on the function of organs. To explore the role of the NTS in the protective mechanism of pre-moxibustion on gastric mucosa, Dr. Liang Peng and co-workers from College of Acupuncture and Tuina, Hunan University of Chinese Medicine in China pointed out that moxibustion pretreatment at the Zusanli point is protective against acute gastric mucosa injury, and NTS damage inhibits these responses.
Therefore, the NTS may be an important area for regulating the signal transduction of the protective effect of pre-moxibustion on gastric mucosa. The relevant paper has been published in the Neural Regeneration Research
(Vol. 9, No. 2, 2014).