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.