American Society for Peripheral Nerve

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Effect of a Basic Fibroblast Growth Factor (Bfgf) Slow-Release System Combined With Biodegradable Nerve Conduit For Nerve Regeneration
Japan Sueyoshi, MD; Hirohisa Kusuhara, MD, PhD; Tomokazu Fukuda, MD, PhD; Noritaka Isogai, MD, PhD
Kindai University, Osaka-Sayama, Japan

Background: Nerve conduits made of biodegradable materials have yet to approach the level of therapeutic success currently achieved with autologous nerve grafting. To investigate a novel approach, a basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) slow-release system was combined with a biodegradable nerve conduit for its capacity to achieve nerve regeneration. Method: An optimal timing for slow-release bFGF was determined using the ELISA quantification. For in vivo testing, a rat transected sciatic nerve model was used with a polyglycolic acid-based nerve conduit to bridge the gap, either without or with a bFGF slow-release incorporated around the conduit. At 2, 4, 8 and 20 weeks after surgery, samples were resected and subjected to histological, immunohistological, and transmission electron microscopic evaluation for nerve regeneration. Result: From the ELISA quantification of bFGF slow-release system, continuous release of bFGF was found at a concentration of 5 g/day during the observation period of 2 weeks. When this system was combined with nerve conduit, the migration distance of vascular endothelial cell extended, and the number of blood vessels increased. Moreover, both the subsequent migration distance of Schwann cell and the growth distance of axon extended. From the result of image analysis of the number and distribution of myelinated nerve fiber, it was found that the maturity of nerve also increased with time. Conclusion: It was suggested that the bFGF slow-release system acted on both cell groups of endothelial cells and Schwann cells and improved the nerve regeneration of the biodegradable nerve conduit.


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