Journal of Undergraduate Research


peripheral nervous system, loss of sensation, loss of motor control, regeneration


Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology


Chemical Engineering


Neuropathy, disease, and trauma to the peripheral nervous system cause devastating effects. These effects can include both a loss of sensation and a loss of motor control. Due to the newness of the field of regenerative medicine, scientists are only beginning to understand how nerves regenerate. It is known that when damage occurs to the nerves, the body triggers a regeneration process. Unfortunately, this process is slow and the level of sensation that returns and motor control varies from person to person. Some options involving autografts and allografts have been employed to help the nerve endings regenerate to all distal ends. When these options cannot be used, new nerve fibers grow disproportionately, and tissue is left without innervation. In the case of trauma, scar tissue simply fills in the space the best it can. If space is preserved, site appropriate tissue more readily regrows and fills in the gaps. We seek to improve the speed and quality of recovery of damaged peripheral nerves through the use of a multichannel porcine-derived urinary bladder matrix conduit (UBM), produced by ACELL, Inc.