Sildenafil Ameliorates Long Term Peripheral Neuropathy in Type II Diabetic Mice
Nodal and paranodal regions of myelinated sciatic nerve fibres from diabetic (db/db) mice were examined in freeze fracture replicas. In some fibres, the axolemma was found to display abnormalities in the paranodal region. These include shallow, undifferentiated junctional indentations, thinning of the indentations with widening of the non-junctional grooves between them, particle clusters within the non-junctional grooves, and patches in which axolemmal E-face particles are distributed randomly rather than in the form of linear strings within grooves. Nodal structure, in contrast, is hardly affected. Nodal E-face and P-face particle densities in db/db axons are not significantly different from those in age-matched controls, although we found a few examples in which the E-face density fell slightly below the normal range. Occasional fibres showing evidence of paranodal or segmental demyelination were also seen. The results support paranodal pathology as a potential basis for reduced nerve conduction velocity in diabetic nerves but provide no evidence for significant changes in nodal structure or in nodal Na channel density in sciatic nerve fibres of the db/db mouse.