Motion-specific laryngeal reinnervation using muscle-nerve-muscle neurotization

Academic Article


  • There is no current treatment method that can reliably restore physiologic movement to a paralyzed vocal fold. The purposes of this study were to test the hypotheses that 1) muscle-nerve-muscle (M-N-M) neurotization can be induced in feline laryngeal muscles and 2) M-N-M neurotization can restore movement to a paralyzed vocal fold. Muscle-nerve-muscle neurotization can be defined as the reinnervation of a denervated muscle via axons that are induced to sprout from nerves within an innervated muscle and that then traverse a nerve graft interposed between it and the target denervated muscle. A paralyzed laryngeal muscle could be reinnervated by axons from its contralateral paired muscle, thus achieving motion-specific reinnervation. Eighteen adult cats were divided into sham, hemilaryngeal-denervated, and M-N-M-reinnervated thyroarytenoid muscle groups. Five of the 6 reinnervated animals had histologic evidence of axons in the nerve graft, 4 of the 6 had evoked electromyographic evidence of crossed reinnervation, and 1 of the 6 had a return of appropriately phased adduction. This technique has great potential and should be further investigated.
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Hogikyan ND; Urbanchek M; Johns MM; Carroll WR; Kileny PR; Kuzon WM
  • Start Page

  • 801
  • End Page

  • 810
  • Volume

  • 110
  • Issue

  • 9