The gold standard for peripheral nerve regeneration uses a sensory autograft to bridge a motor/sensory defect site. For motor nerves to regenerate, Schwann cells
(SC) myelinate the newly grown axon. Sensory SCs have a reduced ability to produce myelin, partially explaining low success rates of autografts. This issue is masked in pre-clinical research by the excessive use of the rat sciatic nerve defect model, utilizing a mixed nerve with motor and sensory SCs. Aim of this study was to utilize extracorporeal shockwave treatment as a novel tool to influence SC phenotype.
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