The American journal of Chinese medicine

Improved peripheral nerve regeneration in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats by oral lumbrokinase.

PMID 25787300


We assessed the therapeutic effects of lumbrokinase, a group of enzymes extracted from the earthworm, on peripheral-nerve regeneration using well-defined sciatic nerve lesion paradigms in diabetic rats induced by the injection of streptozotocin (STZ). We found that lumbrokinase therapy could improve the rats' circulatory blood flow and promote the regeneration of axons in a silicone rubber conduit after nerve transection. Lumbrokinase treatment could also improve the neuromuscular functions with better nerve conductive performances. Immunohistochemical staining showed that lumbrokinase could dramatically promote calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) expression in the lamina I-II regions in the dorsal horn ipsilateral to the injury and cause a marked increase in the number of macrophages recruited within the distal nerve stumps. In addition, the lumbrokinase could stimulate the secretion of interleukin-1 (IL-1), nerve growth factor (NGF), platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF), and transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) in dissected diabetic sciatic nerve segments. In conclusion, the administration of lumbrokinase after nerve repair surgery in diabetic rats was found to have remarkable effects on promoting peripheral nerve regeneration and functional recovery.