The benefits of acupuncture are well known by those who use it, and there is much of the proof that it works, both for Physical conditions such as pain, and for anxiety and depression.

There is even a growing body of evidence regarding acupuncture’s therapeutic effect within animals. Behavioral measures, specifically designed to ascertain its effect levels  maternal separation,  and nicotine withdrawal, show that it is effectiveness to reduce stress and behavior associated with depression and anxiety.

All of this is great and points to the fact that there is more to acupucture than “you believe that it works therefore it dose”.  But how dose it work? What is the mechanism of action?

New research from Georgetown University Medical Center (GUMC) in Washington, DC, Might just have some answers. The researchers found that acupuncture works by affecting  hypothalamus pituitary adrenal (HPA) axis – the chronic stress pathways associated with chronic pain, the immune system, mood and emotions.


HPA is the connection between the central nervous system and the endocrine system regulating the release of stress hormones.