Objective: To estimate the effect of myogenic stem cells on contractile function of the external anal sphincter after transection with or without repair in an animal model. Methods: One hundred twenty virginal female rats were randomly assinged to repair (n=60) or no repair (n=60) after anal sphincter transection. Animals were further divided into two groups: 40-microliter injection at the transection site with either phosphate-buffered solution (control) or myogenic stem cells (3.2×10 cells). Animals were killed at 7, 21, or 90 days, and the anal sphincter complex dissected and analyzed for contractile function. Results: Contractile function of the external anal sphincter was severely impaired 7 days after sphincter transection with or without repair. Twitch tension, maximal tetanic contraction, and maximal contractile force in response to electrical field stimulation improved significantly with time after sphincter repair. Injection of myogenic stem cells in the anal sphincter at the time of repair resulted in superior contractile function at both 7 days and 90 days compared with controls. Interestingly, contractile function of the nonrepaired external anal sphincter did not improve with time with or without myogenic stem cells. Indicators of denervation (fatigue and twitch or tetany ratios) did not change among groups. Conclusion: In this animal model, injection of myogenic stem cells at the time of external anal sphincter repair resulted in enhanced contractile function at 90 days compared with repair alone. Without repair, function of the external anal sphincter was not improved by stem cell therapy at any time point. These results suggest that addition of myogenic stem cells improves both acute and long-term function of the external anal sphincter after mechanical injury.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Obstetrics and Gynecology