Preferential reinnervation of motor nerves by regenerating motor axons

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279 Scopus citations


Regeneration of axons into inappropriate distal nerve branches may adversely affect functional recovery after peripheral nerve suture. The degree to which motor axons reinnervate sensory nerves, and vice versa, has not been determined. In these experiments, HRP is used to quantify the sensory and motor neurons that reinnervate sensory and motor branches of the rat femoral nerve after proximal severance and repair. Motoneurons preferentially reinnervate the motor branch in juveniles and adults, even if the repair is intentionally misaligned or a gap is imposed between proximal and distal stumps. A specific interaction thus occurs between regenerating motor axons and the Schwann cell tubes that lead to the motor branch. This interaction is independent of mechanical axon alignment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1026-1031
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Neuroscience
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1988

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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