Author(s): Sivak WN, Bliley JM, Marra KG
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Abstract Optimizing the quantity, quality, and speed of axon regeneration is important in maximizing functional outcomes following peripheral nerve injury. When severed, injured nerves must be able to regenerate and reconnect to the structures they previously controlled within 12-18 months before sensation and motion are permanently lost. Nerve sprouts from the proximal stump will spontaneously migrate toward the distal stump in the event of a nerve transection. However, surgical intervention remains necessary to repair transection injuries. Regeneration becomes particularly troublesome with large gaps, where autologous nerve grafts or nerve guides are used to repair transected nerves. Nerve conduits function as therapeutic adjuncts, guiding axonal regeneration across gap defects. Despite the availability of several FDA-approved nerve conduits, functional outcomes following their use remain less than optimal. Much work has been focused on developing nerve conduits to improve peripheral nerve repair outcomes. This chapter describes fabrication of a poly(caprolactone) nerve guide and demonstrates its use in a rat sciatic nerve model.
This article was published in Methods Mol Biol
and referenced in International Journal of Sensor Networks and Data Communications