This study assessed the neuroprotective effects of angelica injection in the rat sciatic nerve crush injury (SCI). Forty eight male Sprague Dawley rats were randomly divided into 4 groups: one was the sham group (S), which received sham surgery and given saline injection and the others were received SCI surgery and given saline injection, high and low dose angelica injection for 4 weeks, respectively. The sciatic functional index (SFI) in walking-track analysis, conductive velocity (CV), the number of fluorogold labeled motoneurons, and the expression patterns of brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and nerve growth factor (NGF) in the sciatic nerve and spine were examined. The results showed that SFI descended gradually on day 7, and dropped more quickly on day 28 in treatment groups (Low and High dose group). The CV in treatment groups was higher than control group (C). The numbers of motoneurons in treatment groups were larger than C group (P < 0.05), but less than that in S group (P < 0.01). The expressions of BDNF and NGF protein in the groups received SCI surgery were significantly lower than in S group, but the protein expressions in the groups received angelica injections were significantly higher than that in C group (P < 0.01). These findings suggested that angelica injection can improve the sciatic nerve crush injury, and the mechanism might be through the increase of BDNF and NGF protein expression.
Keywords: Sciatic nerve crush injury, angelica injection, sciatic function index, Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF), Nerve Growth Factor (NGF)
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