ISSN 0914-4935

Sensors and Materials
is an international peer-reviewed open access journal to provide a forum for researchers working in multidisciplinary fields of sensing technology.
Sensors and Materials
is covered by Science Citation Index Expanded (Clarivate Analytics), Scopus (Elsevier), and other databases.

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Stripe-patterned Microtunnel Device for Evaluating Acceleration of Conduction Velocity in Neuron and Schwann Cell Myelinating Co-culture

Koji Sakai, Kenta Shimba, Kiyoshi Kotani, and Yasuhiko Jimbo

(Received May, 29, 2018; Accepted October 11, 2018)

Keywords: microelectrode array, microfabricated device, surface patterning, axonal conduction, myelin

Understanding the functional contributions of myelin maturation is essential in the treatment of peripheral nerve diseases. However, little is known regarding sequential changes in the action-potential conduction velocity (CV) during the myelin maturation. This lack of knowledge is primarily because of the difficulty in evaluating the CV in individual axons included in the bundle. In this study, we developed a neuron/Schwann cell co-culture device for evaluating the myelin-regulated changes in the CV by combining a microtunnel-electrode technique with a surface patterning method. A stripe pattern of matrigel for guiding axon growth was aligned on an electrode set covered by the microtunnel. Immunocytochemical staining demonstrated that more than 95% of the cells attached on the stripe pattern and P0-positive myelin sheaths were formed in the microtunnel-covered area. Electrical stimulation evoked activities in the axons and the activities were separately recorded, indicating that our device provides the CV in individual axons. Furthermore, activity with CV two times higher (1.02 m/s) than that of the unmyelinated axons appeared after the start of myelin formation, suggesting that the activity of partially myelinated axons can be detected. These results suggest that our approach is effective for investigating sequential changes in the CV with myelin maturation.

Corresponding author: Koji Sakai




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