04-26-2004, 01:48 AM
• Zhang J, Lineaweaver WC, Oswald T, Chen Z and Zhang F (2004). Ciliary neurotrophic factor for acceleration of peripheral nerve regeneration: an experimental study. J Reconstr Microsurg. 20: 323-7. Division of Plastic Surgery, University of Mississippi, Jackson, MS. The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of topically administrated ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) on peripheral nerve regeneration. Sixty-eight Sprague Dawley rats underwent a unilateral sciatic nerve transection and silicon tubulization, with a 10-mm gap between the proximal and distal nerve stumps. Recombinant human CNTF (1 mg/kg) was injected into the rats of the experimental group, while normal saline was injected into the control group animals. Electrophysiologic and histologic studies, including nerve morphometry and electron microscopic observation, were performed at 1, 3, and 4 months postoperatively. HRP tracing was carried out at 3 months postoperatively to label spinal-cord, ventral-horn, and dorsal-root ganglia. The results revealed that CNTF-treated animals showed a higher motor nerve conduction velocity of the sciatic nerve and a higher muscle action potential amplitude of the anterior tibial muscle, compared to the controls ( p < 0.01). Nerves repaired with CNTF had larger axon diameter, greater number of axons, and more advanced myelination [ p < 0.05). More HRP-labeled motor neurons were also found in the ventral horns of CNTF-treated animals. These results indicate that topical application of CNTF to the injury site potentiates motor nerve axonal regrowth and axon maturation during peripheral nerve regeneration.