The bridge between Modern Western Medicine and Traditional Chinese Medicine

Learning Objectives:

  1. Theory of 'Channels & Collaterals' of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) describes physiology and pathology of intercellular space; theory of 'Zang & Fu organs' describes physiology and pathology of cells and sub-cellular organelles.
  2. Despite of differences in terminology used in TCM and modern Western medicine, their description of a man is analogous to each other.
  3. Cellular therapy is a bridge between modern Western and traditional Eastern medical systems.


According to the theory of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) Qi and blood circulate through the human body along the special pathways known as "Channels and Collaterals". The main function of the channels is to conduct electrical current, warmth, light etc., so that 'Qi' travels along the channel much like the water flows along the river. During several thousand years this theory was applied effectively for diagnostic and therapeutic purpose. In 2003 the hypothesis that "Channels & Collaterals" theory describes physiology and pathology of the intercellular space were reported for the first time [Teppone, et al. 2003].

TCM distinguishes in the human body 12 main organs, namely Lung, Spleen, Heart, Kidney, Liver, Pericardium, Stomach, Large Intestine, Small Intestine, Gallbladder, Bladder, and "Triple Burner" (San Jiao). Concept of "Organs" in TCM includes the set of cellular and intracellular structures that carry out certain functions. For example, the organ "Lung" involves all structures that facilitate diffusion and transport of gases (O2 & CO2) as well as oxidative phosphorylation and synthesis of ATP molecules. So, physiology and pathology of the intercellular spaces are described by the theory of "Channels & Collaterals", and physiology and pathology of cells and sub-cellular structures are described by the theory of "Zang & Fu organs" [Teppone, et al. 2003, 2007].

According to the modern Western point of view any animal and human bodies consist of various organs, tissues, cells, sub-cellular structures and molecule. The growth, development or self-healing of the human body starts from the replication of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) that consists of two helical chains assembled from 4 nitrogen bases (adenine, cytosine, thymine, guanine). The combination of purine and pyrimidine bases in groups of 3 forms 8 types of triplets on the basis of which the synthesis of amino acids take place. If we analyse the human being according to TCM theory we can find "life" (~TAO), 2 basic principles like Yin & Yang, 4 Seas or Reservoirs, 8 extra Channels, then Zang & Fu Organs as well as Channels & Collaterals. After comparison of these two schemes one can make a conclusion about similarity of them [Teppone, et al. 2009].

The modern history of Western cellular therapy began from the name of Paracelsus (1493-1541), who claimed Similia Similibus Curentur that means "like treats like". The most prominent event in the history of cellular therapy happened in 1931 when Dr. P.Niehans injected successfully fresh cells of a new born ox to a patient who had tetany due to accidental removing parathyroid gland during surgery [Niehans, 1960; Stephan, 1972]. Further studies with injections of live cells showed that that procedure was safe and very effective in many cases of common or even "incurable" diseases, including genetically based disorders.

Nowadays cellular therapy includes various technique and products; the most promising types of cellular therapy are fetal precursor stem cells, sub-cellular organelles, extracts and ultra- filtrates, separate peptides with the specific functions, amino acids etc.

Taking into consideration the scheme of similarity between modern Western and traditional Chinese medical systems mentioned above we consider that an effective future of cellular therapy can be based on the recent achievements of modern pathological science as well as on the deep knowledge of human physiology and pathology developed in the ancient time.



  • Niehans P. Introduction to Cellular therapy. – New York: Pagent Books, Inc., 1960: 119.
  • Stephan P.The secret of Eternal Youth: Rejuwenation through Dr. Niehans' cell therapy. – ArcoPublishing, 1972: 158.
  • Teppone M., Avakyan R. EHF-therapy and modern aspects of traditional Chinese medicine. – In: Millimetre waves in medicine and biology: The 13th Russian symposium (Moscow, Dec 1-3, 2003). – Moscow: MTA-EHF, Ltd., 2003: 62-64.
  • Teppone M., Avakyan R. Modern Interpretation of Traditional Chinese Medicine Theory. - Med Acup 2009, 21(3):201-206.
  • Teppone M., Avakyan R. Modern View on the Theory of Channels, Collaterals and Organs. − Med Acup 2007, 19 (1): 43-48.

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