Laser-activated solid protein bands for peripheral nerve repair: an in vivo study

Antonio Lauto, Rodney Trickett, Richard Malik, Judith M. Dawes*, Earl R. Owen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Citations (Scopus)


Background and Objective: Severed tibial nerves in rats were repaired using a novel technique, utilizing a semiconductor diode- laser-activated protein solder applied longitudinally across the join. Welding was produced by selective laser denaturation of solid solder bands containing the dye indocyanine green. Study Design/Materials and Methods: An in vivo study, using 48 adult male Wistar rats, compared conventional microsuture-repaired tibial nerves with laser solder-repaired nerves. Nerve repairs were characterised immediately after surgery and after 3 months. Results: Successful regeneration with average compound muscle action potentials of 2.5 ± 0.5 mV and 2.7 ± 0.3 mV (mean and standard deviation) was demonstrated for the laser-soldered nerves and the sutured nerves, respectively. Histopathology confirmed comparable regeneration of axons in laser-and suture-operated nerves. Conclusion: The laser-based nerve repair technique was easier and faster than microsuture repair, minimising manipulation damage to the nerve.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)134-141
Number of pages8
JournalLasers in Surgery and Medicine
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1997


  • indocyanine green dye
  • laser-activated protein solder
  • nerve repair
  • tissue welding


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