Visualization of the Primo Vascular System by Using Trypan Blue in the Subarachnoid Space of Rats

  • Inhyung Lee
  • Zhen-dong Su
  • Ki Woo Kim
  • Byung-Cheon Lee
  • Kwang-Sup Soh
Conference paper


One of the most recognized theories for the acupuncture meridian has been the concept that acupuncture effects propagate through the nervous system. Beyond this general concept in Western medicine, there was one revolutionary idea for the acupuncture meridian, named “Bonghan theory.” The Bonghan theory insisted that acupuncture effects transmit not via the nerve system but via specific channels, named Bonghan ducts (primo vessels, PVs). Bonghan theory insisted that the PVs also existed in the nerve system. In order to visualize the nerve primo vessels (NPVs) under arachnoid mater of rat, Trypan blue (TB) was intrathecally injected into the spinal cord of rats. TB worked to visualize NPVs as effectively as in previous works. The NPVs were investigated by using light microscopic and transmission electron microscopic (TEM) images. Those images of the NPVs showed that they had regular patterned rod-shaped nuclei and that many microparticles existed as in other NPVs inside rabbit brain ventricles and central canals. The new structure, the NPVs, under the arachnoid mater of the spinal cord of rats could encourage one to reconsider that there may be other potential channels in the nerve system corresponding to acupuncture meridian.


Spinal Cord Trypan Blue Central Canal Intrathecal Injection Trypan Blue 
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This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korean government (MEST) in 2010 (No. 2010-0025289) and by the Korean Pharmacopuncture Foundation Grant funded by the Korean Pharmacopuncture Institute (KPI-2010-003).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Inhyung Lee
  • Zhen-dong Su
  • Ki Woo Kim
  • Byung-Cheon Lee
    • 1
    • 2
  • Kwang-Sup Soh
  1. 1.Ki Primo Research Laboratory, KAIST Institute for Information Technology ConvergenceKorea Advanced Institute of Science and TechnologyDaejeonKorea
  2. 2.Pharmacopuncture Medical Research CenterKorean pharmacopuncture InstituteSeoulKorea

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