Author(s): Lee SC, Tsai CC, Yao CH, Hsu YM, Chen YS,
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Abstract The present study provides in vitro and in vivo evaluation of arecoline on peripheral nerve regeneration. In the in vitro study, we found that arecoline at 50 μg/ml could significantly promote the survival and outgrowth of cultured Schwann cells as compared to the controls treated with culture medium only. In the in vivo study, we evaluated peripheral nerve regeneration across a 10-mm gap in the sciatic nerve of the rat, using a silicone rubber nerve chamber filled with the arecoline solution. In the control group, the chambers were filled with normal saline only. At the end of the fourth week, morphometric data revealed that the arecoline-treated group at 5 μg/ml significantly increased the number and the density of myelinated axons as compared to the controls. Immunohistochemical staining in the arecoline-treated animals at 5 μg/ml also showed their neural cells in the L4 and L5 dorsal root ganglia ipsilateral to the injury were strongly retrograde-labeled with fluorogold and lamina I-II regions in the dorsal horn ipsilateral to the injury were significantly calcitonin gene-related peptide-immunolabeled compared with the controls. In addition, we found that the number of macrophages recruited in the distal sciatic nerve was increased as the concentration of arecoline was increased. Electrophysiological measurements showed the arecoline-treated groups at 5 and 50 μg/ml had a relatively larger nerve conductive velocity of the evoked muscle action potentials compared to the controls. These results indicate that arecoline could stimulate local inflammatory conditions, improving the recovery of a severe peripheral nerve injury.
This article was published in Am J Chin Med
and referenced in International Journal of Neurorehabilitation