The main take-home point (and why much of the language in this article should have raised flags for reviewers) is the fact that this study demonstrated at most a plausible mechanism for the localized pain relief claims of acupuncture. The actual efficacy of acupuncture as a legitimate pain treatment modality, like any other medical treatment, still needs to be demonstrated clinically (something which it has largely failed to do despite years of research), and this study has no bearing on the non-pain treatment claims of acupuncture. Unfortunately, the article fails to acknowledge the lack of clinical support for acupuncture as a treatment modality, as well as failing to acknowledge the many aspects of acupuncture which are in no way validated by these results (non-pain treatment claims, body meridians, and all the rest of the unsupported magic an acupuncturist spends years learning), all while claiming validation for acupuncture.
What angers me the most about situations like this is that negative result studies for alternative 'medicine' modalities never receive the same sort of coverage. The prestige and respect of the journal of Nature Neuroscience will now be co-opted by the alternative medicine community to justify far more than the only somewhat plausible technique of poking people with needles to provide temporary pain relief - all, of course, for a 'reasonable' price.