Hackensack University Medical Center Hackensack United States
This research aimed to assess the efficacy of our recently developed a new surgical technique called nerve-muscle-endplate grafting NMEG in the native motor zone NMZ for muscle reinnervation in a rat neck muscle model. An NMEG harvested from a donor muscle was implanted into the NMZ of the experimentally denervated muscle. Our experiments showed that NMEG-NMZ technique yielded optimal functional recovery 82 of the control of the target muscle. Importantly, the outcome of the NMEG-NMZ was further improved by additional use of exogenous neurotrophic factors ENF and intraoperative brief electrical stimulation ES. Specifically, the combination of NMEG-NMZ with ENF and ES resulted in more optimal functional recovery 91 and 90 of the control, respectively as compared with NMEG-NMZ surgery alone. Our studies have demonstrated that NMEG-NMZ procedure physically facilitates rapid axon-endplate connections and that focal administration of the ENF and intraoperative brief ES result in extensive nerve regeneration and muscle reinnervation.