Nerve Regeneration

Nerve Regeneration

 

ELUTE® fiber redefines what is possible in nerve repair and regeneration by delivering sensitive growth factors in controlled, sustained release profiles directly to the injury site and nerve regeneration can be orchestrated without requiring tissue to be harvested from elsewhere in the patient’s body.

Spinal Cord Injury Repair

TissueGen is currently developing a medical device incorporating ELUTE fiber to advance the treatment and recovery of patients with spinal cord injuries  resulting in paralysis. Currently in animal trials, TissueGen is applying ELUTE fiber to repair previously irreversible spinal cord injuries. By delivering sensitive growth factors directly to the injury site, nerve regeneration can be promoted without requiring tissue to be harvested from elsewhere in the patient’s body for cell transplantation.

ELUTE fiber enables the creation of three-dimensional concentration gradients of neurotrophic factors that are positionally stable over time and these gradient scaffolds may be surgically implanted into a severed spinal cord.  The concentration gradients of the various neurotrophic factors may selectively entice motor and sensory axons to cross a gap in opposite directions in the severed spinal cord by directing and upregulating axonal growth as depicted in vitro in the figure below.

DRG

Peripheral Nerve Repair

ELUTE fiber can promote peripheral nerve regeneration. A parallel array of fibers provides excellent scaffolding for guiding neurons and ELUTE fiber loaded with biologically active neurotrophic factors has been shown to attract neurons from isolated DRG cells in cell culture experiments (as shown in the associated photographs).

DRG Cells

group of DRG cells placed on top of a NGF-loaded fiber

Sciatic Nerve Repair

ELUTE fiber applied in a rat sciatic nerve resection model demonstrated the ability to induce fascicular formation in an artificial nerve graft for the first time. The photograph below was taken at 10 weeks post-implantation:

rat sciatic nerveThe micrograph shows the cross section of the rat sciatic nerve in panel A; the white dots are the cross section of fiber. Panel B is a blow-up of the rectangular section of panel A, and shows fascicular formation (marked by small arrows). Panel C is a blow-up of the square in panel B, and shows an abundance of myelinated axons (marked by arrows) and a small blood vessel. Panel C also illustrates good tissue compatibility immediately next to the fiber on the far left of the image.

Please see the publications page for a number of peer-reviewed papers using ELUTE fiber in peripheral nerve work.

Learn more about how ELUTE fiber enables nerve generation through the delivery of biologics here.