Without appropriate response to traumatic injury, the nervous system cannot survive.
The superior cervical (sympathetic) ganglion of the neonatal rat has been a uniquely
valuable model system in which to study neuronal response to traumatic injury. Explantation
of the ganglion into culture involves severing both presynaptic fibers (compromising
preganglionic input) and axotomy (damaging efferent axons of ganglionic neurons).
Since traumatic injury of any kind involves the elaboration of inflammatory cytokines,
we have been interested in examining the action of these inflammatory cytokines on
neurotransmitter gene expression in injured sympathetic ganglia.