Effect of Frankincense Extract on Nerve Recovery in the Rat Sciatic Nerve Damage Model.
Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2016 ;2016:3617216. Epub 2016 Apr 10. PMID: 27143985
This study investigated the effect of frankincense extract on peripheral nerve regeneration in a crush injury rat model. Forty-eight Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into four groups: control and frankincense extract low-, medium-, and high-dose groups. At days 7, 14, 21, and 28 following the surgery, nerve regeneration and functional recovery were evaluated using the sciatic functional index (SFI), expression of GAP-43, and the proliferation of Schwann cells (SCs) in vivo and in vitro. At day 7, the SFI in the frankincense extract high-dose group was significantly improved compared with the control group. After day 14, SFI was significantly improved in the medium- and high-dose groups. There was no significant difference in GAP-43 expression among the groups at day 7. However, after day 14, expression of GAP-43 in the high-dose group was higher than that in the control group. Histological evaluation showed that the injured nerve of frankincense extract high-dose group recovered better than the other groups 28 days after surgery. Further, S100 immunohistochemical staining, MTT colorimetry, and flow cytometry assays all showed that frankincense extract could promote the proliferation of SCs. In conclusion, frankincense extract is able to promote sciatic nerve regeneration and improve the function of a crushed sciatic nerve. This study provides a new direction for the repair of peripheral nerve injury.