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Spatial models of cell distribution in human lumbar dorsal root ganglia.

Authors
  • Sperry, Zachariah J1, 2
  • Graham, Robert D1, 2
  • Peck-Dimit, Nicholas1, 2
  • Lempka, Scott F1, 2, 3
  • Bruns, Tim M1, 2
  • 1 Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan.
  • 2 Biointerfaces Institute, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan.
  • 3 Department of Anesthesiology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan.
Type
Published Article
Journal
The Journal of Comparative Neurology
Publisher
Wiley (John Wiley & Sons)
Publication Date
Jul 01, 2020
Volume
528
Issue
10
Pages
1644–1659
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1002/cne.24848
PMID: 31872433
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

Dorsal root ganglia (DRG), which contain the somata of primary sensory neurons, have increasingly been considered as novel targets for clinical neural interfaces, both for neuroprosthetic and pain applications. Effective use of either neural recording or stimulation technologies requires an appropriate spatial position relative to the target neural element, whether axon or cell body. However, the internal three-dimensional spatial organization of human DRG neural fibers and somata has not been quantitatively described. In this study, we analyzed 202 cross-sectional images across the length of 31 human L4 and L5 DRG from 10 donors. We used a custom semi-automated graphical user interface to identify the locations of neural elements in the images and normalize the output to a consistent spatial reference for direct comparison by spinal level. By applying a recursive partitioning algorithm, we found that the highest density of cell bodies at both spinal levels could be found in the inner 85% of DRG length, the outer-most 25-30% radially, and the dorsal-most 69-76%. While axonal density was fairly homogeneous across the DRG length, there was a distinct low density region in the outer 7-11% radially. These findings are consistent with previous qualitative reports of neural distribution in DRG. The quantitative measurements we provide will enable improved targeting of future neural interface technologies and DRG-focused pharmaceutical therapies, and provide a rigorous anatomical description of the bridge between the central and peripheral nervous systems. © 2020 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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