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Thread: Friedman, et al. (2002). Biodegradable polymer grafts for surgical repair of the injured spinal cord.

  1. #1

    Friedman, et al. (2002). Biodegradable polymer grafts for surgical repair of the injured spinal cord.

    • Friedman JA, Windebank AJ, Moore MJ, Spinner RJ, Currier BL and Yaszemski MJ (2002). Biodegradable polymer grafts for surgical repair of the injured spinal cord. Neurosurgery. 51 (3): 742-52. Summary: PURPOSE: Biodegradable polymers have been used in the surgical repair of peripheral nerves, but their potential for use in the central nervous system has not been exploited adequately. This article discusses concepts related to the engineering of a biodegradable polymer graft for surgical repair of the injured spinal cord and explores the potential means by which such a device might promote axon regeneration and functional recovery after spinal cord injury. CONCEPT: A biodegradable polymer implant with controlled microarchitecture can be engineered, and its composition can be optimized for implantation in the spinal cord. RATIONALE: The use of a biodegradable polymer implant has the dual advantages of providing a structural scaffold for axon growth and a conduit for sustained-release delivery of therapeutic agents. As a scaffold, the microarchitecture of the implant can be engineered for optimal axon growth and transplantation of permissive cell types. As a conduit for the delivery of therapeutic agents that may promote axon regeneration, the biodegradable polymer offers an elegant solution to the problems of local delivery and controlled release over time. Thus, a biodegradable polymer graft would theoretically provide an optimal structural, cellular, and molecular framework for the regrowth of axons across a spinal cord lesion and, ultimately, neurological recovery. CONCLUSION: Biodegradable polymer grafts may have significant therapeutic potential in the surgical repair of the injured spinal cord. Further research should be focused on the bioengineering, characterization, and experimental application of these devices. <http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&dopt=Citation&li st_uids=12188954> Department of Neurologic Surgery, Mayo Clinic, and Department of Molecular Neuroscience, Mayo Medical School and Mayo Foundation, Rochester, Minnesota.

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    Senior Member mk99's Avatar
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    I think this may be an EXCELLENT way to go. A biodegradable polymer loaded with combination of something like Schwann, OEG & ASC or ESC could very well do the trick.

    From previous experiments one of the problems with bridges were that the axons love the environment too much and don't want to grow out the other side. Wouldn't a polymer that essentially "disappears" over a period of a few months potentially solve this problem?

    Dr. Young I really appreciate your patience... Sorry, I ask a lot of questions.

  3. #3
    Yes, indeed. There is great interest in developing a biodegradable polymer that has the characteristics of support neuronal and axonal growth. This review article summarizes the current trends in the field. It is a rapidly expanding area. Wise.

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