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Laser Acupuncture

by Dr. Reijo Mäkelä and Dr. Anu Mäkelä, Finland

Editor's Notes: The following article is written for those readers interested in more technical information regarding the newest findings in "electromedicine." It is our intention to provide at least one technical article in each volume of the Earthpulse Flashpoints for those so oriented.

Laser based acupuncture has been used by the Mäkelä's for about fourteen years. During this period they have treated over 12,000 individuals using this method. The use of a class IV laser, in conjunction with electric current coupled with specific nutrients and dietary adjustments has led to remarkable results. Over six hundred of the Mäkelä's former patients have come together and formed a foundation to support his work because of the positive results. The treatments have been used to relieve symptoms and sometimes eliminate the diseases targeted by the doctors.

The system of treatment was developed over time by the senior Mäkelä while working as a physiologist. He was interested in the electrical character of the human body and he began to study this area in the early 1960's. During this time he noted that the electrical skin resistance varied significantly over different points on the body. While initially mapping the points he determined that they correlated with the known acupuncture points of the body. He then began to look at the effect of electric currents and later laser light in influencing human health conditions. The results were startling and successful.

His daughter, Dr. Anu Mäkelä, followed in his footsteps and has expanded the knowledge with her father. This article is one of their many collaborative efforts to bring these breakthroughs forward for use by practitioners throughout the world. At present they are working together a couple times a year delivering courses in one of the larger Universities in Finland. By teaching their method of healing their knowledge will continue to be multiplied.

It is an honor for Earthpulse Press to begin introducing the work of these truly gifted individuals in the United States and throughout the world where Flashpoints is read. Abstract

The interaction of light and living systems has several working mechanisms: energy dissipation through electromagnetic and quantum mechanical fields, trigger function for biochemical, electrochemical and structural changes. Laser light of specific wavelengths (He-Ne laser 633nm), of relatively low emission intensity (mWatt range) and of low dose (Joule/cm2) has been successfully used in various medical laser therapies during the last 20 years.

The results obtained with He-Ne laser on patients with so called Œincurable' diseases has led to several theoretical working models of the possible effects of the 633 nm irradiation.

Upon research, many previous physical studies on the effects of radiation by differing wavelengths were discovered. By combining this information with the biochemical and electromagnetic functional theories of the living cell, a hypothesis can be formulated:

The trigger function of laser light causes biochemical and electromagnetic reactions which may alter the progress of such diseases and symptoms as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's Disease, hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism and migraine.


For 10 years we have been using low power He-Ne laser therapy to alleviate pain in cases of migraine, sciatica, neuritis, arthritis, terminal cancer, and neuralgia. Within a few months it was noted that not only was pain alleviated quite effectively by this method, but also marked improvement occurred in various diseases.

Dr. Reijo Mäkelä had previously done research on the differing mechanisms of disease-etiology and it was hypothesized that this specific radiation affected not only the production of endorphins and enkephalins, but also several other sub-cellular reactions.

The studies of Dr. Mäkelä led to the strong belief that many diseases and symptoms of the patients were somehow linked with thyroid function. Upon repeated thyroid function tests of treated patients it was discovered that thyroid function was indeed altered during and after laser treatments.

However, all patients did not have abnormal thyroid hormone levels in the blood even though they had all the typical symptoms of thyroid malfunction. This led to the hypothesis that low emission laser irradiation does not necessarily only alter the production of thyroid hormones but also affects the production of catabolism of hormonal second messengers.


In his experiments Earl Sutherland found that cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) acts as a second messenger in the action of some hormones where the first messenger is the hormone itself. Perhaps the most important feature of Sutherland's discoveries is that the hormone need not enter the cell. Its impact is made at the cell membrane and the biological effects of the hormone are mediated inside the cell by cAMP rather than by the hormone itself. Thus the hormonal signal is greatly amplified by the use of cAMP as a second messenger.

Cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) is synthesized from ATP under the catalytic influence of adenylate cyclase, which is located on the inner side of the plasma membrane. When various extracellular messengers bind to surface receptors, the inner part of the receptor is changed in such a way that it induces a second protein (G protein) to bind guanosine triphosphate (GTP) (Norman & Litwack, 1987). In this form, G protein activates adenylate cyclase, which creates a consequent rapid increase in the cytosol concentration of cAMP.

In order to respond quickly to the body's changing requirements, the level of cAMP must be capable of rapid change. Production of cAMP continues only so long as messenger-receptor complexes persist at the cell surface, and such complexes are rapidly removed by endocytosis. Also, activated G protein quickly renders itself inactive by hydrolyzing its bound GTP, and cAMP in the cytosol is rapidly destroyed by phosphodiesterases. Accordingly brief signals induce rapid and short-lived changes in cAMP levels.

Edwin Krebs and Donald Walsh discovered that cAMP activates a protein kinase in skeletal muscle. This protein kinase phosphorylates both glycogen synthetase (rendering it inactive) and phosphorylase kinase (rendering it active). In this way, cAMP stimulates glycogen breakdown and stops glycogen synthesis in muscle. A similar mechanism exists in the liver.

The cAMP system is closely integrated with another important second messenger system, in which Ca++ plays a major role. The overall concentration of intracellular calcium is bound in various organelles or incorporated into calcium phosphate or calcium-binding proteins, and so is not in ionic form. There is thus a steep concentration gradient of Ca++ across the plasma membrane and this is maintained by using energy derived from hydrolysis of ATP to pump Ca++, against the gradient both out of the cell and into its organelles. The binding of some extracellular messengers to their cell surface receptors produces a local effect on the plasma membrane and the membrane of cell organelles, the result of which is to allow Ca ++ to enter the cytosol. Like cAMP, the level of cytosol Ca++ c an change rapidly. Entrance of relatively small numbers of calcium ions can increase the concentration to several times the low baseline level, and the level can be reduced rapidly by Ca++ pumps (Schatzman, 1983). As was mentioned earlier, cAMP acts as a second messenger to various hormones: adrenaline, corticotropin, lipotropin, vasopressin and specifically para- thyroid hormone and thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH). Thyroid hormone production is regulated by a classic multilevel feedback control system, mainly controlled by TSH. The thyroid- stimulating hormone exerts its effects on thyroid epithelium by activating adenylate cyclase which, by increasing cAMP, stimulates all the processes of thyroid hormone formation and releases thyroxine (T4), triodothyronine (T3), and calcitoninhine and triodothyronine are iodinated amino acids which have the effect of increasing heat production in various tissues by uncoupling oxidative phosphorylation, i.e. by increasing oxygen utilization relative to the formation rate of high energy phosphate bonds ­ two processes which are closely linked in the economy of the cell. Triiodothyronine (the active form of thyroid hormone) binds to nuclear receptors of cells that are sensitive to it and influences transcription of DNA and thus influences cellular metabolism.

Depending on the amounts and availability of certain amino acids, cAMP affects different sub cellular reactions accordingly. The presence of a high amount of cAMP causes an increase in the production of norepinephrine and epinephrine. These are produced from the amino acid tyrosine, and its product, dopamine. Effect of Low Emission Laser Irradiation between the wavelengths of 620-642 nm, the production of phosphodiesterase is slightly increased (Räsänen & Bondybey, 1984). Since this is a cAMP catabolist, the intracellular effects of cAMP are reduced.

Between the wavelengths of 630-640 nm, nicotinate or nicotinic acid-a B complex vitamin ­ that is a constituent of the redox coenzymes nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) and nicotineamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADP) ­ reacts with urea or ammonia, whichever is present in abundance (Graselli & Ritchey, 1975) and forms anthranilate and carbon dioxide. NAD and NADP production through this pathway slows down but conversely the production of NAD and NADP through the citric cycle is emphasized.

Anthranilate in turn reacts at wavelengths of 620-670 nm (Graselli & Ritchey, 1975), producing benzoate and from that phenyl pyruvate. At wavelengths of 628-652 nm phenyl pyruvate is turned into phenylalanine (Margar^etha, 1982). Phenylalanine is a naturally occurring amino acid which is essential for growth in infants and for nitrogen equilibrium in human adults. Phenylalanine is also the amino acid from which tyrosine is formed. Tyrosine in turn is the precursor of thyroid hormones, dopa, dopamine, norepinephrine, epinephrine and melanin.

Absorption spectra of amino acids and metabolic pathways, summary

at 620-642 nm: Production of phosphodiesterase increased
at 630-640 nm: Nicotinate - Anthranilate
at 620-670 nm: Anthranilate - Benzoate - Phenyl pyruvate
at 628-652 nm: Phenyl pyruvate- Phenylalanine - Tyrosine

Phosphodiesterase catabolises cAMP, reducing the active amounts.
Tyrosine is precursor of dopa, dopamine, norepinephrine and epinephrine.
Tyrosine is also precursor of thyroxine (T4), triiodothyronine (T3), and other thyroid hormones.


As was mentioned earlier, cAMP acts as a second messenger to various hormones: epinephrine or adrenaline, noerpinephrine or noradrenaline, corticotropin, lipotropin, vasopressin and specifically para-thyroid hormones and thyroid-stimulating hormones (TSH). When the amount of phosphodiesterase (which regulates the catabolism of cAMP) is increased, the active amounts of cAMP are reduced. Thus the effects of the above mentioned hormones are also reduced since the second messenger activity is slowed down. Thus hyperthyroid-like symptoms are relieved. However, it must be pointed out that direct irradiation of thyroid tissue seems to massively increase the production of thyroid hormones.

In the event of hypothyroidic symptoms it should be noted that, even though the effect of the cAMP second messenger system is reduced, the subsequent increase in the production of tyrosine enables the body to produce the needed amounts of thyroid hormones more easily.

This increased production of tyrosine also enables the body to produce levodopa and dopamine, the lack of which causes muscle stiffness, tetany, spastic movements, involuntary muscle contractions and a variety of symptoms which are better known by the name of Parkinson's Disease.

This then is the possible reason why even quite advanced cases of Parkinson's Disease have shown marked improvement after repeated Low Emission Laser Irradiation treatments. Here it must also be pointed out that these treatment sessions are quite lengthy, and the laser is applied to various acupuncture points. Acupuncture by itself gives moderate results in these cases, but when combined with laser treatments it yields more efficient and permanent results.

Alzheimer's Disease has been reported to cause an alteration in the body's calcium (Freeman & Gibson, 1987). These alterations could give rise to the exaggerated cAMP production which has been widely reported to accompany DAT (Dementia of the Alzheimer Type). This results in the stimulation of cAMP dependent phosphokinases, which in turn alters mitochondrial function and results in partial enzyme inhibition. Enzyme inhibition causes changes in oxidative metabolism which is itself an adequate cause of premature neuronal death. Low Intensity Laser Stimulation can accelerate oxidative metabolism in the cells (Klima, 1987) and affects the levels of cAMP, functional amino acids and the resulting enzymes.

The following address and telephone numbers are the most current available for additional information about Dr. Mäkelä and his work. Earthpulse Press will be publishing some of his more interesting work in book form in coming months. The book will be a science translation oriented for lay people without the need for technical knowledge on the part of the reader.

Foundation Address:

President, MSF-Method Foundation
Mr. Matti Salo
Torpparimäentie 90
07810 Jngermanninkyl

Clinic Contact Numbers:

Dr. Reijo Mäkelä, Dr. Anu Mäkelä, Dr. Leila Salo
Tel: 358(9)0-624747
Tel: 358(9)51-3753131
Fax: 358(9)0-624747
Fax: 358(9)51-3753083
Dr. Sari Souronen, Peter Laxström
Tel: 358(9)68-8225541

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