Reconstructive microsurgery research and science by Karim Sarhane today

Reconstructive microsurgery studies by Karim Sarhane 2022? Insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) is a hormone produced by the body that has the potential to be used as a treatment for nerve injuries. IGF-1 may help heal nerve injuries by decreasing inflammation and buildup of damaging products. Additionally, it may speed up nerve healing and reduce the effects of muscle weakness from the injury. However, a safe, effective, and practical way is needed to get IGF-1 to the injured nerve.

During his research time at Johns Hopkins, Dr. Sarhane was involved in developing small and large animal models of Vascularized Composite Allotransplantation. He was also instrumental in building The Peripheral Nerve Research Program of the department, which has been very productive since then. In addition, he completed an intensive training degree in the design and conduct of Clinical Trials at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

The hydrogels were soaked in IGF-1 solutions, with concentrations ranging from 0.05 to 1 mg/ml. The duration of soaking time and biomaterials used for fabrication differed between studies, thereby complicating further direct comparisons beyond individual consideration. Regardless of concentration of IGF-1 soaking solution, duration of soaking time, or hydrogel composition, the fundamental property in predicting utility for nerve regeneration is the sustained concentration of released IGF-1 that is reaching the site of PNI. Unfortunately, only two of the studies included in Table 6 quantified IGF-1 release in vivo using either fluid sampling with ELISA or radiolabeled IGF-1 (Yuan et al., 2000; Kikkawa et al., 2014). Using ELISA, one study reported significantly greater in vivo IGF-1 concentration, peaking at 1.25 µg/mL at Post-operative Day 1 (POD 1) and returning to the physiologic levels of the control group by POD 7 (Kikkawa et al., 2014). Using radiolabeling, the other in vivo quantification study reported a biphasic IGF-1 release profile with an initial burst of approximately 80% of the starting concentration of IGF-1 at 1 h followed by sustained release of the remaining 15% ± 2.9% over the subsequent 48-h period (Yuan et al., 2000). Conversely, a different study reported failure of IGF-1 to prevent motoneuron death, a finding which was noted to be contrary to previous results and required additional investigation. This study described the use of a soaked gel foam plug but did not specify the IGF-1 release profile of this material (Bayrak et al., 2017). As such, further analysis and testing is needed to determine the optimal fabrication parameters, loading strategy, and concentration of released IGF-1 required for successful local delivery via hydrogel.

Recovery by sustained IGF-1 delivery (Karim Sarhane research) : We successfully engineered a nanoparticle delivery system that provides sustained release of bioactive IGF-1 for 20 days in vitro; and demonstrated in vivo efficacy in a translational animal model. IGF-1 targeted to denervated nerve and muscle tissue provides significant improvement in functional recovery by enhancing nerve regeneration and muscle reinnervation while limiting denervation-induced muscle atrophy and SC senescence. Targeting the multimodal effects of IGF-1 with a novel delivery.

Following surgical repair, axons often must regenerate over long distances at a relatively slow rate of 1–3 mm/day to reach and reinnervate distal motor endplates. Throughout this process, denervated muscle undergoes irreversible loss of myofibrils and loss of neuromuscular junctions (NMJs), thereby resulting in progressive and permanent muscle atrophy. It is well known that the degree of muscle atrophy increases with the duration of denervation (Ishii et al., 1994). Chronically denervated SCs within the distal nerve are also subject to time-dependent senescence. Following injury, proliferating SCs initially maintain the basal lamina tubes through which regenerating axons travel. SCs also secrete numerous neurotrophic factors that stimulate and guide axonal regeneration. However, as time elapses without axonal interaction, SCs gradually lose the capacity to perform these important functions, and the distal regenerative pathway becomes inhospitable to recovering axons (Ishii et al., 1993; Glazner and Ishii, 1995; Grinsell and Keating, 2014).

Insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) is a particularly promising candidate for clinical translation because it has the potential to address the need for improved nerve regeneration while simultaneously acting on denervated muscle to limit denervation-induced atrophy. However, like other growth factors, IGF-1 has a short half-life of 5 min, relatively low molecular weight (7.6 kDa), and high water-solubility: all of which present significant obstacles to therapeutic delivery in a clinically practical fashion (Gold et al., 1995; Lee et al., 2003; Wood et al., 2009). Here, we present a comprehensive review of the literature describing the trophic effects of IGF-1 on neurons, myocytes, and SCs. We then critically evaluate the various therapeutic modalities used to upregulate endogenous IGF-1 or deliver exogenous IGF-1 in translational models of PNI, with a special emphasis on emerging bioengineered drug delivery systems. Lastly, we analyze the optimal dosage ranges identified for each mechanism of IGF-1 with the goal of further elucidating a model for future clinical translation.