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Preparation and Integration of Human Amnion Nerve Conduits Using a Light-Activated Technique

O'Neill, Anne C. M.D.; Randolph, Mark A. M.A.S.; Bujold, Kenneth E. B.S.; Kochevar, Irene E. Ph.D.; Redmond, Robert W. Ph.D.; Winograd, Jonathan M. M.D.

Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery: August 2009 - Volume 124 - Issue 2 - p 428-437
doi: 10.1097/PRS.0b013e3181af010c
Experimental: Original Articles

Background: Photochemical tissue bonding is a developing light-activated technique that facilitates watertight sealing between tissue surfaces. Previous work has shown that sealing with photochemical tissue bonding can improve regeneration following primary nerve repair. The authors evaluated sealing of nerve stumps with photochemical tissue bonding within customized human amnion conduits. The authors hypothesized that light-activated integration could enhance regeneration across the nerve gap.

Methods: Photochemical crosslinked amnion conduits were placed across 1-cm sciatic nerve gaps in Sprague-Dawley rats and either secured with sutures or sealed using photochemical tissue bonding. Reversed autologous nerve grafts were used in the control group. Functional recovery was measured by walking track analysis; histology and histomorphometry of nerves and gastrocnemius muscles were evaluated.

Results: Regeneration within the photochemical tissue bonding–sealed amnion conduit was significantly better than that observed in the amnion conduit secured with sutures and did not differ significantly from that in the autologous nerve graft.

Conclusions: Photochemical crosslinked amnion appears suitable as a nerve conduit. Sealing of compatible conduits with photochemical tissue bonding may have the potential to maximize regeneration.

Boston, Mass.

From the Plastic Surgery Research Laboratory and the Wellman Center for Photomedicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School.

Received for publication September 15, 2008; accepted January 26, 2009.

Presented at the Plastic Surgery Research Council meeting, in Stanford, California, June 20 through 23, 2007; the 14th International Congress of the International Confederation for Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery, in Berlin, Germany, June 26 through 30, 2007; and the British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery meeting, in Deauville, France, July 4 through 6, 2007.

Disclosure: None of the authors has any commercial associations or financial disclosures that might pose or create a conflict of interest with information presented in this article.

Mark A. Randolph, M.A.S.; Plastic Surgery Research Laboratory; Massachusetts General Hospital, WAC 435; Harvard Medical School; 15 Parkman Street; Boston, Mass. 02114;

©2009American Society of Plastic Surgeons