Experimental Nerve Injury, Repair and Outcome Evaluation in Rodents

Rajiv Midha, MD, MSc, FRCS(C), FAANS, FCAHS
Professor and Head, Dept of Clinical Neurosciences (DCNS) and Head, DCNS, Alberta Health Services (Calgary Zone), Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary. Scientist and Executive, Hotchkiss Brain Institute, University of Calgary

This presentation will describe experimental nerve injury in rodents ranging from mild to severe nerve injury. These models closely mimic the clinical scenarios seen in nerve injury patients. The implication of these models for the natural history of recovery and deficits will be outlined. Interventional therapies for nerve injury including nerve repair will be described. These will include discussion of cellular therapies, electrical stimulation and microsurgical nerve repair interventions. Outcome evaluations including behavioural testing with quantitative locomotor tasks and assessment will be presented, emphasizing their utilization for evaluation of nerve repair and therapeutics.

About the speaker…

Dr. Rajiv Midha was born in India in 1962 and immigrated to North America in 1972. He received his medical degree (1987), MSc (under Susan Mackinnon’s supervision in 1991), and neurosurgical training (completed in 1995), all from the University of Toronto. He obtained clinical fellowships in peripheral nerve neurosurgery at St. Michaels’ Hospital in Toronto, and at Louisiana State University in New Orleans (under David Kline). Dr. Midha has published over 135 peer-reviewed articles, as well as in textbooks, with over 300 total publications, mostly related to peripheral nerve neurobiology and surgery. He has co-edited three textbooks on peripheral nerve surgery. Dr Midha is internationally recognized as an authority on peripheral nerve surgery, having given over 250 lectures world-wide, and serving as past president of the two foremost international societies related to this speciality, American Society for Peripheral Nerve and the Sunderland Society. In addition he is the current and ongoing section editor and board member for peripheral nerve for all three of the most prominent neurosurgery journals: Journal of Neurosurgery, Neurosurgery and World Neurosurgery.


Dr. Midha runs a peer-reviewed funded basic science laboratory investigation nerve regeneration, and is a Neuroscientist member of the Hotchkiss Brain Institute (HBI) at the University of Calgary. He has a special interest in peripheral nerve function, injury, repair, grafting, and regeneration.  In the recent past, the main thrust of the research lab has been on developing novel cell based therapies to improve outcome from nerve repair.


Dr. Midha is presently Professor and Head of the Department of Clinical Neurosciences (and was recently the Chief, Division of Neurosurgery) at the University of Calgary.  The Department of Clinical Neurosciences is highly academic, composed of more than 100 Faculty members, and is organized into the Divisions of Neurology, Neurosurgery, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation and Translational Neurosciences All areas of sub- specialization in neurology, neurosurgery and physiatry are covered, and each clinical Division has strong residency training program as well as multiple Fellowships.


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