Gene expression of transforming growth factor beta isoforms in interposition nerve grafting. journal of hand surgery Karanas, Y. L., Bogdan, M. A., Lineaweaver, W. C., Hentz, V. R., Longaker, M. T., Chang, J. 2001; 26 (6): 1082-1087


Scar production and neuroma formation at nerve graft coaptation sites may limit axonal regeneration and impair functional outcome. Transforming growth factor beta (TGF-beta) is a family of growth factors that is involved in scar formation, wound healing, and nerve regeneration. Fifteen adult Sprague-Dawley rats underwent autogenous nerve grafting. The nerve grafts were analyzed by in situ hybridization to determine the temporal and spatial expression of TGF-beta1 and TGF-beta3 messenger RNA (mRNA). The grafted nerves showed increased expression of TGF-beta1 and TGF-beta3 mRNA in the nerve and the surrounding connective tissue during the first postoperative week. These data suggest that modulation of TGF-beta levels in the first postoperative week may be effective in helping to control scar formation and improve nerve regeneration.

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