Author(s): Nilsson A, Dahlin L, Lundborg G, Kanje M
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Abstract We hypothesised that pieces of nerve that are normally trimmed away during graft repair could be a source of Schwann cells and used to create an autologous cell-containing nerve graft. To test the idea a transsection injury was made on the rat sciatic nerve. Seven days later, pieces from the proximal and distal stumps were used for immediate isolation of its non-neuronal cells. These cells, of which 80\% were Schwann cells, were injected into a silicone tube bridging a 10 mm gap on the same nerve. Tubes containing cells showed superior regeneration of nerve fibres across the gap compared with tubes with no cells. This new repair technique is rapid, does not require the sacrifice of a healthy donor nerve, or the time-consuming culturing and expansion of Schwann cells. The method has the potential to replace current methods for repair of extended nerve injuries.
This article was published in Scand J Plast Reconstr Surg Hand Surg
and referenced in International Journal of Neurorehabilitation