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Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology
Volume 2009 (2009), Article ID 412598, 4 pages
Research Article

Immune Responses Following Mouse Peripheral Nerve Xenotransplantation in Rats

1Department of Hand Surgery, First Hospital of Jilin University, Changchun, Jilin 130021, China
2Department of Orthopedics, First Clinical College of Harbin Medical University, Harbin, Heilongjiang 150001, China

Received 12 May 2009; Accepted 24 July 2009

Academic Editor: Xudong Huang

Copyright © 2009 Lai-Jin Lu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Xenotransplantation offers a potentially unlimited source for tissues and organs for transplantation, but the strong xenoimmune responses pose a major obstacle to its application in the clinic. In this study, we investigate the rejection of mouse peripheral nerve xenografts in rats. Severe intragraft mononuclear cell infiltration, graft distension, and necrosis were detected in the recipients as early as 2 weeks after mouse nerve xenotransplantation. The number of axons in xenografts reduced progressively and became almost undetectable at week 8. However, mouse nerve xenotransplantation only led to a transient and moderate increase in the production of Th1 cytokines, including IL-2, IFN- , and TNF- . The data implicate that cellular immune responses play a critical role in nerve xenograft rejection but that further identification of the major effector cells mediating the rejection is required for developing effective means to prevent peripheral nerve xenograft rejection.