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Energy Medicine: Current Status and Future Perspectives

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Current practices in allopathic medicine measure different types of energy in the human body by using quantum field dynamics involved in nuclear medicine, radiology, and imaging diagnostics. Once diagnosed, current treatments revert to biochemistry instead of using biophysics therapies to treat the disturbances in subtle energies detected and used for diagnostics. Quantum physics teaches us there is no difference between energy and matter. All systems in the human being, from the atomic to the molecular level, are constantly in motion-creating resonance. This resonance is important to understanding how subtle energy directs and maintains health and wellness in the human being. Energy medicine (EM), whether human touch or device-based, is the use of known subtle energy fields to therapeutically assess and treat energetic imbalances, bringing the body’s systems back to homeostasis (balance). The future of EM depends on the ability of allopathic medicine to merge physics with biochemistry. Biophoton emissions as well as signal transduction and cell signaling communication systems are widely accepted in today’s medicine. This technology needs to be expanded to include the existence of the human biofield (or human energy field) to better understand that disturbances in the coherence of energy patterns are indications of disease and aging. Future perspectives include understanding cellular voltage potentials and how they relate to health and wellness, understanding the overlap between the endocrine and chakra systems, and understanding how EM therapeutically enhances psychoneuroimmunology (mind–body) medicine.
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Systematic Review and Meta-analyses
Energy Medicine: Current Status
and Future Perspectives
Christina L Ross, PhD, BCPP
1
Abstract
Current practices in allopathic medicine measure different types of energy in the human body by using quantum field
dynamics involved in nuclear medicine, radiology, and imaging diagnostics. Once diagnosed, current treatments revert to
biochemistry instead of using biophysics therapies to treat the disturbances in subtle energies detected and used for
diagnostics. Quantum physics teaches us there is no difference between energy and matter. All systems in the human
being, from the atomic to the molecular level, are constantly in motion-creating resonance. This resonance is important
to understanding how subtle energy directs and maintains health and wellness in the human being. Energy medicine (EM),
whether human touch or device-based, is the use of known subtle energy fields to therapeutically assess and treat energetic
imbalances, bringing the body’s systems back to homeostasis (balance). The future of EM depends on the ability of allopathic
medicine to merge physics with biochemistry. Biophoton emissions as well as signal transduction and cell signaling commu-
nication systems are widely accepted in today’s medicine. This technology needs to be expanded to include the existence of
the human biofield (or human energy field) to better understand that disturbances in the coherence of energy patterns are
indications of disease and aging. Future perspectives include understanding cellular voltage potentials and how they relate to
health and wellness, understanding the overlap between the endocrine and chakra systems, and understanding how EM
therapeutically enhances psychoneuroimmunology (mind–body) medicine.
Keywords
energy medicine, psychoneuroimmunology, device-based, human touch, endocrine/chakra systems, voltage potentials
Received December 6, 2018; Revised received December 21, 2018. Accepted for publication January 2, 2019
Introduction
Energy medicine (EM) has been defined as a branch
of integrative medicine that studies the science of
therapeutic applications of subtle energies. For centu-
ries, allopathic or Western medicine has investigated
the body’s internal systems—from organs, tissues, and
cells to the current understanding of hormones and
peptides. While modern medicine focuses primarily on
physiology, the human organism has many aspects that
are not physical—aspects that generate and absorb mas-
sive amounts of information. Physiology interacts with
its environment via ambient fields such as light, sound,
electricity, magnetism, and with all other living organ-
isms to generate massive amounts of information in the
form of energy fields. Voltage potentials (VPs) across cell
membranes direct ion flux, modulating cell function. VPs
are involved in the therapeutic effects of pulsed electro-
magnetic field (PEMF) on immune function and tissue
regeneration, on organ-associated frequencies instru-
mental in the endocrine/chakra systems, and on the reg-
ulatory mechanisms of neurotransmitter conversion of
external fields into chemical or electrical energy involved
in mind–body function known as psychoneuroimmunol-
ogy (PNI). The subtle energies involved in these systems
exhibit the internal and external aspects of the human
being described as the human biofield or human energy
field (HEF). To both understand and treat the entire
human being, current practices in Western medicine
must expand concepts of healing to incorporate physics
1
Wake Forest Center for Integrative Medicine, Medical Center Boulevard,
Winston-Salem, North Carolina
Corresponding Author:
Christina L Ross, Wake Forest Center for Integrative Medicine, Medical
Center Boulevard, Winston-Salem, NC 27157, USA.
Email: chrross@wakehealth.edu
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Volume 8: 1–10
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of the HEF into modern medical practice. Knowledge of
the existence of and effects on the HEF will determine
the future of medicine by opening new medical para-
digms, integrating Western medicine with Eastern med-
ical practices that have been time tested for thousands
of years.
Current Status
Current practices in Western medicine measure different
types of energy in diagnostic procedures. These include
sonograms, X-rays, magnetic resonance imaging,
electrocardiogram, electroencephalogram, computed
tomography, and positron emission tomography scans
involved in nuclear medicine, radiology, and molecular
imaging diagnostics. These devices use an energy source,
such as radiopharmaceuticals (which emit radiation),
introduced into specific tissues or organs that alter or
absorb external electromagnetic fields (EMFs) or ultra-
sound to diagnose cell and organ function. Biophotonics
is being used in medical diagnostics for tagging single
intracellular protein molecules, allowing scientists to
track molecular function in real time with a high
degree of accuracy.
1
Biophoton emissions were first dis-
covered by Fritz-Albert Popp using a type of photomul-
tiplier to count light, photon by photon. This device is
highly sensitive to extremely weak photon emission.
Biophotonics addresses the way in which light interacts
with biological systems including molecules, cells,
tissues, and whole organisms.
2
Quantum processes
include resonant frequencies such as in nuclear magnetic
resonance, a physical phenomenon in which nuclei in a
strong magnetic field are perturbed by a weak oscillating
magnetic fields (in the near field, therefore not involved
in electromagnetic waves) that respond by producing an
electromagnetic signal with a frequency characteristic
of the magnetic field at the nucleus.
3
All atomic nuclei
consist of protons and neutrons, with a net positive
charge. Certain atomic nuclei, such as the hydrogen
nucleus, or the phosphorus nucleus, possess a property
known as “spin,” dependent on the number of protons.
This can be conceived as the nucleus spinning arounds
its own axis, although this is a mathematical analogy.
While the nucleus itself does not spin in the classical
meaning, but through its constituent parts induces a
magnetic moment, generating a local magnetic field
with north and south poles. The quantum mechanical
description of this dipolar magnet is analogous to clas-
sical mechanics of spinning objects, where the dipole is a
bar magnetic with magnetic poles aligned along its axis
of rotation.
3
Nuclei that possess spin can be excited with
magnetic fields in short pulses, whereby the absorption
of energy via the nucleus causes a transition from higher
to lower energy levels and vice versa on relaxation,
returning the system to thermal equilibrium. Energy
absorbed (and subsequently emitted) by the nucleus
induces a voltage that can be detected by a suitably
tuned wire coil, amplified, and displayed as “free-
induction decay,” causing each nucleus to resonate at a
characteristic frequency when placed in the same mag-
netic field.
4
These diagnostic procedures provide tremen-
dous amounts of information relating to the health of
the patient.
Once the diagnosis using quantum mechanics is com-
pleted, current treatments revert to biochemistry instead
of using treatments involving the subtle energies that
made the original diagnosis. Quantum physics teaches
us there is no difference between energy and matter.
All systems in an organism, from the atomic to the
molecular level, are constantly in motion-creating reso-
nance. This resonance is important to understanding
how electromagnetism (radiation/light) can have differ-
ent effects on the body. While all matter resonates,
there are signature resonant frequencies, emitting
unique characteristic signals from the nuclei of their
respective atoms.
5,6
Most biomedical researchers agree
that EMFs surround and flow through the body in the
form of electricity, with the heart registering the highest
electrical activity, emitting 2.5 W, producing 40 to
60 times more electricity than the brain.
7
The electrical
activity of the heart and nervous systems interacts and
affects one another, with the heart being correlated with
the highest magnetic activity.
8
Classic body systems include the nervous/enteric
system, the circulatory system, the immune/lymphatic,
digestive system, skeletal system, respiratory system,
integumentary, endocrine, urinary/renal, and reproduc-
tive systems. Each of these systems is a channel for
energy communication. Wisneski and Anderson suggest
that these energy communication channels effect
emotions as well as our sense of self.
9
For example, the
nervous system transmits information to the proper part
of the brain to be assimilated and sent back to a part of
the body it intends to influence. Cerebral spinal fluid
carries information that affects the endocrine, immune,
and the central nervous system (CNS), sympathetic ner-
vous system (SNS), and parasympathetic nervous system
(PNS). PNI, the relationship between the psyche
(thoughts), neuroscience (CNS, SNS, and PNS), and
immunology, incorporates psychology with neurology,
immunology, physiology, endocrinology, and rheuma-
tology.
10
Research suggests that the mind and body
communicate in a bidirectional flow of hormones, neu-
ropeptides, and cytokines.
11,12
In the immune system,
protein molecules known as cytokines are the principal
mediators of communication between the immune and
neuroendocrine system, which results in immune system
modulation, particularly regarding inflammation and
infection.
13
Activated immune cells can permeate the
blood–brain barrier and secrete cytokine mediators.
14–16
2Global Advances in Health and Medicine
Cytokines play an enormously important role in system
homeostasis during immune challenges.
17
Both immune
and neuroendocrine systems share signaling molecules,
primarily neuropeptides, and cytokines, which promote
communication with and between the systems of the
body. These are examples of how the body has the capac-
ity to function in a similar manner, with separate, yet fully
interactive parts, maintaining homeostasis.
There is a substantial body of evidence to suggest that
perceptions of one’s environment can be profoundly
immune enhancing or immune suppressive.
11
Stress
decreases the body’s lymphocytes—the white blood
cells that help fight off infection. Lower lymphocyte
levels increase the risk of viral infection and common
cold.
18
Leukocytes not only modulate neuroendocrine
peptide production via the CNS but are capable of
producing stress-associated peptides and hormones pre-
viously thought to reside exclusively in the CNS.
19
High-stress levels can also cause anxiety and depression,
leading to higher levels of inflammatio.
20
Current med-
ical science uses this biochemical model of molecules,
cells, tissues, organs, and systems to focus on an orga-
nized structure–function relationship of health and dis-
ease. This model needs to be expanded to deeper levels
that include electromagnetic and quantum processes that
play a major role in how nature organizes itself.
Energy Medicine (EM) Defined
EM is the use of known subtle energy fields to therapeu-
tically assess and treat energetic imbalances, bringing
the body’s systems (neurological, cardiovascular, respi-
ratory, skeletal, endocrinal, emotional/psychological,
etc) back to homeostasis. Knowledge of the existence
of the HEF is the first step to understanding integral
physiology, which unites body, mind, and spirit to
treat the entire human being—not just the physiology.
21
The HEF has been described as a complex dynamic of
EMFs that include individual oscillating electrically
charged moving particles such as ions, biophotons, and
molecules, which create standing waves.
22
Disturbances
in the coherence of energy patterns of the HEF are indi-
cations of disease and aging.
23
When these energy par-
ticles are exposed to EM in the form of coherent energy
patterns (eg, PEMF, vibrational medicine, Polarity
Therapy, acupuncture, Healing Touch, etc), the
disturbed resonant patterns return to their original,
coherent, harmonic, and vibrational state (homeostasis).
If Western medicine applied the principles of modern
physics, it would understand human beings are com-
posed of information (energy) interacting with other
energy (environment) to profoundly impact our physical
and emotional health. The HEF has been investigated in
scientific laboratories where photon emissions were
detected using photometers and color filter.
24–27
Human energy vibrations were recorded at 1000 times
higher in frequency than the electrical signals of nerve
and muscle, with continuous dynamic modulation unlike
the pulsing signals of the nervous system.
23
Energy in
the HEF is typically referred to as subtle energy,
28
which is electromagnetic in nature. It is a system of
wave-particle matter, transmitting and receiving vibra-
tional information governing the physical matter of the
body. Healing is achieved by directing coherent, harmonic
energy into distortions caused by stressors and disease.
For many years, Western medicine rejected the possi-
bility that an EMF could affect biochemical mechanisms
with such weak electrical fields. Biochemistry, however,
is based on an understanding of the flow of energy that
drives chemical reactions.
29
Physical properties of mole-
cules can be combined to express internal energy and
thermodynamic potentials, which are necessary for equi-
librium and homeostasis in spontaneous processes.
9
New
models of biophysics emphasize cooperative electrical
activity of highly ordered elements at all levels of phys-
iology: cells, tissues, organs, organ systems, as well as the
entire body. Laboratory research with in vivo (animal)
and in vitro (cell and tissue cultures) has shown impor-
tant effects caused by low-frequency or weak EMF ther-
apies, causing changes in cell proliferation; alterations in
membrane structure and function; changes in nucleic
acids, protein phosphorylation, and adenosine triphos-
phate (ATP synthesis); as well as entrainment of brain
rhythms and conditioned brain response.
30–32
Parameters of these fields include frequency, amplitude
(field strength), waveform, and time of exposure.
Recognition of physiological sensitivities to exogenous
EMF came from the observation of internal endogenous
electrical processes.
9
An example of this is the piezoelec-
tric properties of bone that use electromechanical
control to determine which cells become osteoblasts or
osteoclasts. By modulating cellular processes with
PEMF,
33
windows of opportunity for therapeutic appli-
cation have been discovered for improving the regener-
ation of osteoblasts to bone before becoming
osteoclasts.
34
All cells produce EMFs because the
human body produces complex electrical activity in all
the body’s 210 different cell types. Neurons, endocrine
cells, and muscle cells are all referred to as “excitable
cells.” These cells produce current (via electron transfer);
magnetic field (via moving charges); a pulsed frequency;
as well as pH, oxygen, carbon dioxide, and light (via
biophotons).
35
Detailed clinical research in biophysical stimulation
has identified specific cellular processes responding to
electromagnetic forces. Selective pathways at the cell
plasma membrane are activated depending on the
PEMF applied. These include voltage-gated calcium
channels activated by capacitive coupling,
32
intracellular
calcium flux modulated with inductive coupling,
36
and
Ross 3
inositol phosphate by mechanical stimulation.
37
Basic
research on cells, animals, along with clinical studies
have reported therapeutic dosimetries for frequency,
amplitude (field strength), waveform, orientation, and
time of exposure needed to activate specific processes
in specific cells.
30
Processes activated by PEMF signals
have been reported in the plasma membrane’s cell sur-
face receptors through the cytoplasm into the nucleus
and genes, where transcription factors affect translation
of cell function.
38,39
Externally applied EMF can affect
orientation, migration, and proliferation of cells, playing
key roles in healing.
36
Modalities of EM
There are several modalities of EM that interact with the
subtle energy of the body. These include, but are not lim-
ited to, PEMF therapy, Polarity Therapy, acupuncture,
Healing Touch, Therapeutic Touch, Reiki, homeopathy,
Qi Gong, and applied Kinesiology. New medical para-
digms can bridge the gap between conventional/allopathic
and EM. For instance, PEMF and acupuncture have
plausible electromagnet modes of action.
Device-Based Treatment
Research shows PEMF at extra low frequencies (ELFs)
is beneficial to immune system modulation
40
as well as
tissue regeneration.
32
PEMF can pass through the skin
into the body’s conductive tissue, resulting in reduced
pain and edema, and stimulation of wound healing
after trauma.
36
Electromagnetic therapies can affect
cell signaling systems through the modulation of cyto-
kine function,
40
second messengers such as cyclic aden-
osine monophosphate,
41
transcription factor nuclear
factor kappa B,
40
and tissue regeneration,
34
without
cytotoxic or genotoxic effects.
42
EMFs oscillate at vari-
ous frequencies, however, ELFs (<100 Hz) are most
commonly used for therapeutic purposes. Currently,
there are several types of EMF therapies used in
Western medicine. They include Laser surgery to resect
hepatomas, metastatic tumors, and colorectal liver
metastases;
43
transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation
to relieve acute and chronic pain;
44
cranial electrical
stimulation for the treatment of neuroendocrine imbal-
ance and chronic stress-associated diseases;
45
and PEMF
therapy, which has been approved by the U.S. Food and
Drug Association for the treatment of nonunion frac-
tures, muscle reeducation, and relations of muscle
spasm.
46
PEMF has also been used to treat osteoarthri-
tis,
47
peripheral nerve pain,
44
wound healing,
36
spinal
cord injury,
48
and cartilage repair.
32
Targeted pulsed
magnetic fields are being used to treat depression in
the form of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS).
49
This therapy targets key areas of the brain that are
underactive in people with depression.
50
Inefficient pro-
duction of brain neurotransmitters (chemical messengers
that send signals between brain cells) are brought
back to homeostasis,
51
without the adverse effects of
antidepressants.
52
PEMF medical devices are available to purchase,
but expertise is needed to assure the patient is using
the optimal frequency, field strength, and time of expo-
sure for the tissue type being treated. These devices can
be applied in 2 different ways—either by capacitive or by
inductive coupling. In capacitive coupling, there is no
contact with the body, whereas direct coupling requires
the placement of opposing electrodes in direct contact
with the surface of the targeted tissue. With inductive
coupling (nondirect capacitive coupling), electrodes do
not have to be in direct contact with the tissue because
the electric field produces a magnetic field that, in turn,
produces a current in the conductive tissues of the
body.
46,53,54
PEMF therapy is based on Faraday’s law,
a basic law of electromagnetism that predicts how a
magnetic field will interact with an electric circuit to pro-
duce an electromotive force known as electromagnetic
induction. EMF has been stigmatized as a cancer caus-
ing agent; however, it is the ionizing EMF that emits
high enough energy states to dislodge electrons from
atoms.
55
It is the nonionizing EMF that is used for ther-
apeutic purposes.
Acupuncture
Acupuncture can be considered an electromagnetic phe-
nomenon due to the ionic charge between 2 acupuncture
points. This has been demonstrated by Mussat and
others.
56–58
Acupuncture needles with 1 metal (copper,
silver, bronze, or an alloy) for the shaft and another
metal for the handle, form tiny batteries.
9
Some acu-
puncture therapies use additional electrical stimulation
(2–4 Hz) applied to the needles. From this electrical per-
spective, each organ in the body is like a battery housed
in a sac of electrolytes, with a positive potential on the
surface of the sac that is the aggregate result of electrical
processes in the tissues of the organs.
9
The positive
potential at the needle tip attracts negatively charged
ions from the interstitial medium until a saturation
equilibrium is achieved.
59–61
The normal functions of
an organ tend to generate stronger and more harmonic
ionic effects than organs with trauma or disease.
62
Acupuncture is considered a wiring system in the body,
as is the analog perineural nervous system,
63
and ion
transfer within blood plasma.
64
It is difficult to use a
voltmeter to measure the voltage in organs because
voltages pulse in the body. It is common to use an
ohm meter to measure the voltage and convert ohms
to volts using Ohm’s law (voltage ¼ohms amps).
Table 1 shows frequencies that correspond to
4Global Advances in Health and Medicine
organ function. Assuming amperage is constant, then
ohms ¼voltage.
65
Human Touch Therapies
Touch therapies work using touch, interaction, and
certain protocols to modulate energy imbalances in the
HEF. Polarity Therapy, Healing Touch, Reiki, Cranial-
Sacral Therapy, Trager, Bowen, and Brennan Healing
Science all use similar techniques for bringing the HEF
back to homeostasis. The subtle energy of the HEF is
easily modulated by the therapist’s hands. The client and
practitioner work together using breathing techniques to
move stagnant or blocked energy from the cells, across
the tissues and through the organs. Human touch
therapies are patient–practitioner oriented, where both
the giver and receiver of the energy treatment must work
in tandem for beneficial results to occur. The practition-
er grounds and centers himself/herself, meaning all
thoughts, emotions, and physical sensations are neutral-
ized. During optimal healing states, our bodies resonate
at certain frequencies (0.3–100 Hz), which correlate with
delta, theta, alpha, and beta brain waves
66
(see Table 2).
Touch therapies bring distorted frequencies of brain
waves, organ resonance, and endocrine/chakra systems
back into balance by modulating the subtle energies of
the HEF. Practitioners detect and manipulate the subtle
energy and provide a resonating template for the
patient’s biofield to follow. In this state, body–mind–
spirit is optimal for bringing the patient/client back to
homeostasis energetically. Practitioners of touch thera-
pies are a valuable resource in guiding both the practice
and science of biofield therapies and could, with collab-
orative support of researchers, prepare meaningful case
reports and best-case series for patients.
67
Future Perspectives
The future of EM depends on the ability of Western
medicine to merge physics with biochemistry. As men-
tioned earlier, Western medicine uses physics to diagnose
and then immediately reverts to a biochemical model to
treat. It is widely accepted that quantum physics drives
the energy behind diagnostic equipment.
68,69
Biophoton
emissions as well as signal transduction and cell signal-
ing communication systems in the body are also widely
accepted in today’s medicine.
70
However, the idea of a
cellular and molecular global communication system
involving energy fields is beyond the central dogma of
Western medicine. Future perspectives include bridging
the gap between allopathic and EM, which would
include the crossover between the following: (a) under-
standing cellular VPs and how they relate to health
and wellness, (b) understanding the overlap between
the endocrine and chakra systems, and (c) understanding
how EM therapeutically enhances PNI (mind–
body medicine).
Cellular Voltage Potentials (VPs)
The human body is controlled primarily by physics that
drives the chemistry and biology.
65
Therefore, to under-
stand how the body works, it is important to understand
physics and electronic applications of cellular structure.
Endogenous VPs control cell behavior and instruct
pattern regulation in vivo.
71
Cells are designed to oper-
ate with a pH between 7.35 and 7.45. This equates to a
voltage of between 20 and þ125 mV.
65
The minus ()
sign denotes electrons are being donated (alkaline), and
the plus (þ) sign denotes electrons are being taken
(acidic). A slightly alkaline environment is more benefi-
cial. For example, a free radical is a molecule with miss-
ing electrons, and an antioxidant is a molecule donating
electrons. Health is maintained with vital immune
function and cell regeneration. A voltage of 50 mV is
required for regenerating cells.
65
Jerry Tennant, MD,
reports that a 50 mV energy state is necessary for
maintaining good health, and 70 mV is optimal.
Without this balanced VP, aging and chronic disease
occurs.
65
This baseline can be achieved through healthy
diet and keeping the body’s subtle energy balanced. Cells
contain a process for turning fatty acids into glucose.
They are processed through a series of chemical reac-
tions known as the Krebs cycle. The Krebs cycle
Table 1. Frequencies Associated With Normal
Organ Function.
Organ Frequency (MHz)
Brain 70–78
Thyroid 62–68
Lungs 58–65
Thymus 65–68
Heart 67–70
Spleen 60–80
Liver 55–60
Stomach 58–65
Colon 70–78
Table 2. Brain Wave States and Their Correlated Frequency
and Physiology.
Brain
Wave
Frequency
(Hz) Physiology
Gamma 30–100 Peak performance
Beta 12–30 Awake—normal alert consciousness
Alpha 8–12 Relaxed, calm, lucid, not thinking
Theta 4–7 Deep relaxation and
meditation, mental imagery
Delta 0.3–4 Deep dreamless sleep
Ross 5
converts ATP to adenosine diphosphate (ADP). As ATP
provides electrons to keep the cell functioning, it
becomes a discharged/rechargeable battery called ADP.
If voltage drops, the VPs go from electron-donor to
electron-stealing status. This will cause a change in
polarity. When voltage drops to þ30 mV, disease sets
in Tennant.
65
To produce voltage, cell membranes are made up of
opposing layers of fats called phospholipids. They are
composed of phospholipid heads, which are round,
and phospholipid tails, which look like legs (Figure 1).
Anytime 2 conductors are separated by an insulator,
they create a capacitor, and this can be observed in
the cell’s plasma (outer) membrane.
72
Capacitors are
designed to store electric charge (electrons), allowing
cells not only to store energy but also to transfer it.
The plasma membrane allows EMF to permeate into
the cell to affect cellular mechanisms such as cytokines
and second messengers (transcription factors) to carry
information from the plasma membrane through the
cytoplasm into the nuclear membrane to affect genetic
function. The plasma membrane contains voltage-gated
ion channels that open and close depending on the volt-
age supplied.
32
If they become hyperpolarized, then ions
such as calcium (Ca
2þ
), potassium (K
þ
), and sodium
(Na
þ
) cannot flow freely in and out of the cell. This
causes increases in the pain-related neurotransmitters
and inflammatory/immune functions of cells.
13
In his
book, The Body Electric, Robert O Becker, MD, dis-
cusses the direct current (DC) system of glial cells
involved in regenerating electrical feedback loops that
influence the production and transmission of these
voltage-gated action potentials in nerves.
73
For example,
glial cells are nonneuronal cells that maintain homeosta-
sis, form myelin, and provide support and protection for
neurons in the brain and for neurons in other parts of
the nervous system (such as the autonomic nervous
system).
74
Nerve cells are constantly releasing neuro-
transmitters into the synaptic gaps between themselves
and the neurons they contact. The DC carried over
these cells energetically effects the nerves they surround
by influencing the presynaptic sites. Thus, the plasma
membrane VP determines the responsiveness of each
neuron in releasing neurotransmitters on cue. These sig-
nals can be modulated by exogenous fields such as
electromagnetism.
32,36
Endocrine and Chakra Systems
The pathway from the physical body through the
hormones to the psychological and emotional body
is through the endocrine system, which is closely associ-
ated with the chakra system. The major glands of
the endocrine system are the hypothalamus, pituitary,
thyroid, parathyroid, adrenal, pineal, and reproductive
organs (generatives). The pituitary cells are neuronlike—
they express numerous voltage-gated sodium (Na
þ
),
calcium (Ca
2þ
), potassium (K
þ
), and chloride (Cl
)
channels, and fire action potentials spontaneously,
accompanied by a rise in intracellular Ca
2þ
. In some
cells, spontaneous electrical activity is sufficient
to drive the intracellular Ca
2þ
concentration above the
threshold for stimulus-secretion and stimulus-
transcription coupling. In other cells, the function of
these action potentials is to maintain the cells in a
responsive state with cytosolic Ca
2þ
near, but below,
the threshold level. Some pituitary cells also express
gap junction channels, which could be used for intercel-
lular Ca
2þ
signaling in these cells. Endocrine cells also
express extracellular ligand-gated ion channels, and their
activation by hypothalamic and intrapituitary hormones
leads to amplification of the pace-making activity and
facilitation of Ca
2þ
influx and hormone release. These
cells also express numerous G protein-coupled receptors,
which can stimulate or silence electrical activity and
action potential-dependent Ca
2þ
influx and hormone
release.
75
Other members of this receptor family can acti-
vate Ca
2þ
channels in the endoplasmic reticulum, lead-
ing to a cell type-specific modulation of electrical
activity.
75
These same physics phenomena are seen in
the other glands of the endocrine system.
76
Overlapping the endocrine system is the chakra
system, which contains seven vital energy centers that
run from the base of the spine to the top of the head,
centered on the spinal column. They include the follow-
ing: (1) root chakra—associated with the adrenals, (2)
the sacral chakra—associated with the generatives (ova-
ries for women and testes for men), (3) the solar plexus
chakra—associated with the pancreas, (4) the heart
chakra—associated with the thymus, (5) the throat
Figure 1. A healthy cell has a membrane potential of approxi-
mately 70 mV, meaning that the potential inside the cell is 70 mV
less than the potential outside due to a layer of negative charge on
the inner surface of the cell wall and a layer of positive charge on
the outer surface. This effectively makes the cell wall a charged
capacitor.
32
6Global Advances in Health and Medicine
chakra—associated with the thyroid, (6) the third eye
(located between the eyebrows)—associated with the pitu-
itary gland, and (7) the crown chakra—associated with
the pineal gland. Table 3 shows the correlation between
the chakra location and its associated frequency.
77
Chakras produce energy vortices, which, when
healthy, provide the energetic information by which all
the systems of the body create a global information
system. More empirical data are needed to determine
whether EM therapies can heal endocrine diseases/
distortions through the subtle energy in and around
these glands. Endocrine disorders include glucose
homeostasis disorders, thyroid disorders, calcium
homeostasis disorders, metabolic bone disease, pituitary
gland disorders, sex hormone disorders, and tumors of
the endocrine glands, to name a few. These conditions
affect the quality of life of millions of people around
the world. When the exchange of information between
hormones, peptides, neurotransmitters, cells, tissues,
organs, and regulatory systems in the body break
downs, the most efficient way to bring this exchange of
information back to health is through energy in the form
of electromagnetic information. The directives of subtle
energy treatments realign the HEF back to homeostasis
or default mode. The HEF information system is similar
to the interconnection of all global computers that form
the Internet, with each cell representing an individual
personal computer constantly uploading and download-
ing information to the World Wide Web. Once there
is an understanding of the human being as a global
information system of cell communication, signaling
transduction, and energetic instruction sets, medicine
will begin to treat the entire human, body–mind–spirit,
with physics as the lowest common denominator, instead
of biochemistry.
Mind–Body Medicine (PNI)
Many aspects of the human endocrine system are asso-
ciated with mind–body medicine, also known as PNI.
PNI explains the connection between the mind/thought
and the immune and nervous systems. Life experiences
such as stressors and depression induce immunological
activation, associated with cytokines and the
hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, which is
the central stress response system.
78
Accessory cells,
such as macrophages, which are essential for the modu-
lation of immune response, mitigate both acute and
chronic stress states having calcium-dependent biochem-
ical mechanisms affecting T-cell proliferation and signal
transduction pathways.
79
PNI studies exact mechanisms
through which specific brain immunity effects are
achieved. Evidence for nervous system/immune system
interactions exists on several biological levels. The
immune system and the brain communicate with each
other through signaling systems of the body linking the
HPA axis and the SNS. The activation of SNS during an
immune response is triggered to localize the inflamma-
tory response.
80,81
The HPA axis responds to physical
and mental challenges to maintain stability in part by
controlling the body’s cortisol level. Imbalances in the
HPA axis are the cause of many stress-related illnesses.
82
HPA-axis activity is linked by inflammatory cytokines
that stimulate adrenocorticotropic hormone and cortisol
secretion, while glucocorticoids suppress pro-
inflammatory cytokines. Cytokine regulation of hypo-
thalamic function is an active area of research for the
treatment of anxiety-related disorders.
83
Complex inter-
actions between cytokines, inflammation, and adaptive
immune responses maintain homeostasis in the body
to protect against disease. As discussed earlier, PEMF
has been reported to significantly downregulate key
cytokines involved in neuroinflammatory diseases
84
and provide critical results in treating dysfunction of
neurotransmitters in severe stress and depression using
TMS devices. Volumes of evidence have been published
supporting the integration of mind–body medicine (PNI)
with endocrine/chakra systems and EM for the benefit of
Western medicine.
9,11
Coherence/Decoherence and
Quantum Resonance
One underlying mechanism that would bring biochemis-
try and nuclear diagnostic applications together would
be the understanding of how resonance applies to bio-
logical systems. After discovering biophotons in the
body, Popp et al., revealed the source of biophoton emis-
sions is deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA). Here, he discov-
ered DNA sends out a large range of frequencies, where
certain frequencies were linked to certain functions.
85
Popp reported that biophoton emissions are low inten-
sity because they are involved in cell coordination and
communication that could only occur at quantum
levels.
86
Once energy reaches a certain threshold, mole-
cules begin to vibrate (resonate) in unison until they
reach a level of coherence. The moment molecules
Table 3. Chakra Location and
Correlated Frequency.
Chakra Location Frequency (Hz)
Crown 216
Third eye 144
Throat 192
Heart 128
Solar plexus 182
Sacral 303
Root 228
Ross 7
reach this state of coherence, they take on certain qual-
ities of quantum mechanics, including nonlocality, where
they operate in tandem.
87
This occurs in ion flux where
the selectivity filter of ion channels exhibits quantum
coherence, which is relevant for the process of ion selec-
tivity and conduction;
88
endocrine hormone secretion,
where highly organized timing of circadian rhythms
and daily control of hormone secretion achieves optimal
biological functioning in health;
89
PNI (the mind–body
connection);
90,91
and decoherence, which is associated
with disease.
92,93
Conclusion
Without crossover applications of human touch and
device-based EM treatments well integrated and easily
accepted in Western medicine, today’s medicine will con-
tinue to lack the missing piece of science so desperately
needed to complete the human cycle of existence. Physics
must be blended with biochemistry to effectively treat
the human being without adverse effects. It is clear
that science and technology have resulted in vastly
improved understanding, diagnosis, and treatment of
disease, but the emphasis on biochemical treatment
over quantum/energy-based technology is creating
adverse events in today’s health care.
21
The healing of
a patient must include more than the biology and chem-
istry of their physical body; by necessity, it must include
the mental, emotional, and spiritual (energetic) aspects.
EM is on the forefront of accepting this challenge.
Declaration of Conflicting Interests
The author(s) declared no potential conflicts of interest with
respect to the research, authorship, and/or publication of
this article.
Funding
The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial
support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of
this article: This work was supported by the Wake Forest
Center for Integrative Medicine, grant no. WFBHS-63313-
740-120330-00000-740196.
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10 Global Advances in Health and Medicine
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Background Interest in the use of extremely low-frequency (ELF) electromagnetic field (EMF) for the treatment of pain and inflammation is increasing due to the ability of this promising therapy to compete with pharmaceuticals without the adverse effects caused by drugs. However, there continues to be concerns regarding cytotoxic and genotoxic effects that may occur as a result of exposure to EMF. Objective To investigate this concern, we tested the effect of our known therapeutic 5 Hz, 0.4 milliTesla (mT) EMF on a human mesenchymal stromal cell (hMSC) line to determine whether ELF-EMF exposure would cause cytotoxic or genotoxic effects. Methods Treated samples along with controls were exposed to 5 Hz, 0.4 mT ELF-EMF for 20 min/day, 3×/week for 2 weeks and then assayed for cell viability, proliferation rates, and chromosome breaks. Results Cytogenetic analysis of the viability and proliferation rates along with analysis of morphological genome stability showed no cytotoxicity, and no chromosome breaks per karyotype analysis—therefore no genotoxicity. Conclusion Exposure to an ELF-EMF of 5 Hz, 0.4 mT for 20 min/day, 3×/week for 2 weeks does not cause cytotoxic or genotoxic effects in hMSCs.
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Electroacupuncture (EA) is a therapeutic modality in which the electrical stimulation is integrated with concepts of acupuncture to treat diseases. This study was designed to evaluate the connection between the electro-acupuncture induced increase in Na99mTcO4 uptake in the stomach wall, and the ionic molecule levels in the extracellular fluid in the acupoints. Wistar rats were treated by 2 or 100 Hz EA at Zusanli (ST 36) and Xiajuxu (ST 39) bilaterally for 60 minutes. The accumulation of Na99mTcO4 in the gastric wall and the free ions, including Ca2+, K+, Na+, and Cl-, in the acupoints were measured every 60 minutes. The radioactivity uptake in the stomach was significantly increased during EA, reaching peak at 180 minutes after the EA. The concentration of extracellular ions was also significantly increased during EA. The Ca2+ level continued to rise until 60 minutes after EA, then started to decrease at 120 minutes post-EA. The results suggest this up-regulatory effect of EA on gastric activity might be triggered by the increase of the extracellular ion levels, this effect lasts longer than stimulating the release of transmembrane Ca2+ flow alone. This might aid in providing a better understanding of the long-lasting effect claimed in acupuncture treatment.
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Background: The therapeutic options for treatment-resistant depression (TRD) encompass a range of neuromodulatory techniques, including repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS). While rTMS is safe and has documented short-term efficacy, durability of antidepressant effects is poorly established. Objective: Assess existing evidence regarding durability of rTMS-induced antidepressant response. Methods: We performed a systematic review of studies reporting antidepressant outcome measures collected three or more months after the end of an induction course of rTMS for depression. Among responders to the induction course, we used a meta-analytic approach to assess response rates at 3 (m3), 6 (m6) or 12 (m12) months after induction, and studied predictors of responder rates using meta-regression. Results: Nineteen studies published between 2002 and 2018 were included. Eighteen were eligible for analysis at m3 (732 patients) and m6 (695 patients) and 9 at m12 (247 patients). Among initial responders, 66.5% sustained response at m3 (95% CI = 57.1-74.8%, I2 = 27.6%), 52.9% at m6 (95% CI = 40.3-65%, I2 = 0%), and 46.3% at m12 (95% CI = 32.6-60.7%, I2 = 0%), in the absence of any major bias. Random-effects meta-regressions further demonstrated that a higher proportion of women, as well as receipt of maintenance treatment, predicted higher responder rates at specific time-points. Conclusions: rTMS is a durable treatment for depression, with sustained responder rates of 50% up to 1 year after a successful induction course of treatment. Maintenance treatment may enhance the durability of the antidepressant effects of rTMS, and should be considered in clinical practice, as well as systematically explored in future clinical trials.
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Purpose: It has been shown that breast tomosynthesis may improve sensitivity and specificity compared to 2D mammography, resulting in increased detection-rate of cancers or lowered call-back rates. The purpose of this study is to characterize a spectral photon-counting multi-slit breast tomosynthesis system that is able to do single-scan spectral imaging with multiple collimated x-ray beams. The system differs in many aspects compared to conventional tomosynthesis using energy-integrating flat-panel detectors. Methods: The investigated system was a prototype consisting of a dual-threshold photon-counting detector with 21 collimated line detectors scanning across the compressed breast. A review of the system is done in terms of detector, acquisition geometry and reconstruction methods. Three reconstruction methods were used, simple back-projection, filtered back-projection and an iterative algebraic reconstruction technique. The image quality was evaluated by measuring the modulation transfer-function (MTF), normalized noise-power spectrum, detective quantumefficiency (DQE) and artifact spread-function (ASF) on reconstructed spectral tomosynthesis images for a total-energy bin (defined by a low-energy threshold calibrated to remove electronic noise) and for a high-energy bin (with a threshold calibrated to split the spectrum in roughly equal parts). Acquisition was performed using a 29 kVp W/Al x-ray spectrum at a 0.24mGy exposure. Results: The difference in MTF between the two energy bins was negligible, i.e.there was no energy dependence on resolution. The MTF dropped to 50% at 1.5 lp/mm to 2.3 lp/mm in the scan direction and 2.4 lp/mm to 3.3 lp/mm in the slit direction, depending on the reconstruction method. The full width at half maximum of the ASF was found to range from 13.8 mm to 18.0 mm for the different reconstruction methods. The zero-frequency DQE of the system was found to be 0.72. The fraction of counts in the high-energy bin was measured to be 59% of the total detected spectrum. Scan-times ranged from 4 s to 16.5 s depending on voltage and current settings. Conclusions: The characterized system generates spectral tomosynthesis images with a dual-energy photon-counting detector. Measurements show a high DQE, enabling high image quality at a low dose, which is beneficial for low-dose applications such as screening. The single-scan spectral images open up for applications such as quantitative material decomposition and contrast-enhanced tomosynthesis. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
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Cranial electrotherapy stimulation (CES) is reported to aid in relieving symptoms of depression and anxiety, though the mechanism underlying this effect remains unclear. Therefore, the present study aimed to evaluate changes in the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis response and levels of neurotrophic factors, as well as changes in mood state, in patients undergoing CES therapy. Fifty healthy postmenopausal women were randomly assigned to either a Sham CES group (n = 25) or an Active CES group (n = 25). CES treatment was conducted in 20-minute sessions, three times per week for 8 weeks, using a micro current cranial electrotherapy stimulator. Blood samples were collected prior to and following the 8-week treatment period for measurement of cortisol, adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), and nerve growth factor (NGF) levels. Changes in mood state were also examined at the time of blood collection using the Profile of Mood States (POMS). No significant differences in cortisol, ACTH, BDNF, or NGF were observed between the two participant groups (p > 0.05) following the treatment period. However, those in the Active CES group exhibited significantly decreased Tension-Anxiety and Depression-Dejection scores on the POMS relative to pre-treatment scores (p < 0.05). Furthermore, Depression-Dejection scores following treatment were significantly lower in the Active CES group than in the Sham CES group (p < 0.05). No significant differences were observed in any other POMS scores such as Anger-Hostility, Vigor-Activity, Fatigue-Inertia, and Confusion-Bewilderment (p > 0.05). These results suggest that 8 weeks of CES treatment does not induce changes in blood levels of neurotrophic factors or HPA-axis-related hormones, though such treatment may be effective in treating symptoms of anxiety and depression.