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New technique may help severely damaged nerves regrow and restore function
Date:4/22/2012

strands so the nerve fibres can form a similar structure to an undamaged nerve."

Once the nerve is fully regrown, the conduit biodegrades naturally.

The team hopes that this approach will significantly increase recovery for a wide range of peripheral nerve injuries.

In laboratory experiments, nerve cells added to the polymer conduit grew naturally within its channelled structure and the research team is now working towards clinical trials.

"If successful we anticipate these scaffolds will not just be applicable to peripheral nerve injury, but could also be developed for other types of nerve damage too. The technique of laser direct writing may ultimately allow production of scaffolds that could help in the treatment of spinal cord injury," says Dr Claeyssens.

"What's exciting about this work is that not only have we designed a new method for making nerve guide scaffolds which support nerve growth, we've also developed a method of easily reproducing them through micromolding," he adds. "This technology could make a huge difference to patients suffering severe nerve damage."


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Contact: Clare Elsley
clare@campuspr.co.uk
44-113-357-2102
University of Sheffield
Source:Eurekalert

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