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Publication Detail
Phosphate glass fibres promote neurite outgrowth and early regeneration in a peripheral nerve injury model
Three-dimensional (3D) scaffolds, which are bioactive and aid in neuronal guidance, are essential in the repair and regeneration of injured peripheral nerves. In this study, we used novel inorganic microfibres guided by phosphate glass (PG). PG fibres (PGfs) were aligned on compressed collagen that was rolled into a nerve conduit. In vitro tests confirmed that adult dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons showed active neurite outgrowth along the fibres, with a maximum number and length of neurites being significantly higher than those cultured on tissue culture plastic. In vivo experiments with nerve conduits that either contained PGfs (PGf/Col) or lacked them (Col) were conducted on transected sciatic nerves of rats for up to 12weeks. One week after implantation, the PGf/Col group showed many axons extending along the scaffold, whereas the Col group showed none. Eight weeks after implantation, the PGf/Col group exhibited greater recovery of plantar muscle atrophy than the Col group. Electrophysiological studies revealed that some animals in the PGf/Col group at 6 and 7weeks post-implantation (5.3% and 15.8%, respectively) showed compound muscle action potential. The Col group over the same period showed no response. Motor function also showed faster recovery in the PGf/Col group compared to the Col group up to 7weeks. However, there was no significant difference in the number of axons, muscle atrophy or motor and sensory functions between the two groups at 12weeks post-implantation. In summary, phosphate glass fibres can promote directional growth of axons in cases of peripheral nerve injury by acting as physical guides. © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
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