• Zhao D, Wang W, Kang K, Jing T, Wang T, Yu X, Yang L and Cui X (2002). Zhonghua Wai Ke Za Zhi 40:862-5. Summary: OBJECTIVE: To investigate the protection effect of nerve implantation to the neurons after sciatic nerve injury to adult rats. METHODS: Thirty male Sprague-Dawley rats weighing 180 - 220 g (8 - 9 weeks of age) were randomly divided into four groups. Group A consisted of normal rats without operation. In group B, the sciatic nerve of rats was transected, with the proximal stump of the sciatic nerve ligated to inhibite nerve regeneration. In group C, a sciatic nerve crushed model was set up. In group D, a sciatic nerve implantation model was established. The rats were sacrificed on postoperative days 7, 14 and 28 respectively. The L(4)-L(6) segments of the spinal cord were harvested. TUNEL technique was used to detect apoptotic motor neurons. HE and Toluidine Blue staining was used for counting motor neurons. RESULTS: The apoptotic neurons detected on the 28th postoperative day were significantly fewer in the implantation group than in the other groups (P < 0.05). The number of motor neurons was significantly higher in the implantation group than in other two control groups [P < 0.05). CONCLUSIONS: Nerve implantation exerts protective effect on neurons after nerve injury. Department of Orthopeadics, Fourth Hospital, Dalian Medical University, Dalian 116001, China.