The effect of number of fascicles on axonal regeneration in cable grafts was examined in the rat cable graft model. The study comprised three experimental groups: the 5f-group, which received 5 fascicles, larger than the host; the 3f-group, in which the total area of the graft fascicles was similar to that of the host; and the 1f-group, which received one fascicle cable graft, smaller in diameter than the host nerve. At the graft segment, well-myelinated fibers were observed both inside and outside the graft fascicles. The three groups showed no difference in morphometric and functional assessment, suggesting that the fibers which regenerated through the outside of the graft might be effectively induced into the distal host. The disproportionate enlargement of the graft fascicle of the 1f-group also increased the fibers passing through it. These findings suggest that a small number of fascicles can induce a larger population of regenerated fibers in the 20-mm cable graft model.
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