GGF2 Is Neuroprotective in a Rat Model of Cavernous Nerve Injury-Induced Erectile Dysfunction.

The journal of sexual medicine

PubMedID: 25639458

Burnett AL, Sezen SF, Hoke A, Caggiano AO, Iaci J, Lagoda G, Musicki B, Bella AJ. GGF2 Is Neuroprotective in a Rat Model of Cavernous Nerve Injury-Induced Erectile Dysfunction. J Sex Med. 2015;.
INTRODUCTION
Erectile dysfunction is a major complication of radical prostatectomy, commonly associated with penile neuropathy. In animal models of peripheral nerve injury, glial growth factor-2 (GGF2), a member of the neuregulin family of growth factors, has neuroprotective and neurorestorative properties, but this potential has not been established after cavernous nerve (CN) injury.

AIMS
The effectiveness of GGF2 in preserving axonal integrity and recovering erectile function in a rat model of radical prostatectomy-associated CN injury.

METHODS
Adult male Sprague-Dawley rats underwent bilateral CN crush injury (BCNI) or sham surgery. Rats were administered GGF2 (0.5, 5, or 15?mg/kg) or vehicle subcutaneously 24 hour pre and 24-hour post-BCNI, and once weekly for 5 weeks. Erectile function was assessed in response to electrical stimulation of the CN. CN survival was assessed by fluorogold retrograde axonal tracing in major pelvic ganglia (MPG). Unmyelinated axons in the CNs were quantitated by electron microscopy.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES
Erectile function recovery, CN survival, and unmyelinated CN axon preservation in response to GGF2 treatment following BCNI.

RESULTS
Erectile function was decreased (P?
CONCLUSIONS
GGF2 promotes erectile function recovery following CN injury in conjunction with preserving unmyelinated CN fibers. Our findings suggest the clinical opportunity to develop GGF2 as a neuroprotective therapy for radical prostatectomy. Burnett AL, Sezen SF, Hoke A, Caggiano AO, Iaci J, Lagoda G, Musicki B, and Bella AJ. GGF2 is neuroprotective in a rat model of cavernous nerve injury-induced erectile dysfunction. J Sex Med **;**:**-**.