Determining Experimental Outcome

Thomas M. Brushart

in Nerve Repair

Published on behalf of Oxford University Press

Published in print May 2011 | ISBN: 9780195169904
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199965168 | DOI:
Determining Experimental Outcome

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  • Sensory and Motor Systems
  • Rehabilitation Medicine


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This chapter describes a variety of measurements that have been used to characterize the outcome of nerve repair in experimental studies. Axon counts and morphometrics, once imprecise, can now be determined from plastic sections at high magnification with the aid of powerful software programs. Electrophysiologic measurements are used frequently to characterize aspects of both sensory and motor axon regeneration; newer techniques, such as magnetoneurography and motor unit number estimation (MUNE) are providing categories of information not previously available. Precise measurement of force generated by isolated muscles in response to neural stimulation has long been a mainstay of regeneration studies. Retrograde labeling studies are assuming a central role in determining both the number and identity of neurons that reinnervate a defined nerve or tissue. Voluntary function has been evaluated most frequently by measuring the walking tracks of rats that have undergone nerve repair. The recent popularity of rat upper extremity models has fostered the development of new tests such as the rat grasping test and the Montoya Staircase Test.

Chapter.  14149 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Sensory and Motor Systems ; Rehabilitation Medicine

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