re:pair is a start-up company that aims to solve the unresolved need of supplying artificial nerve grafts for peripheral nerve reconstruction, that suit for injuries with varied gaps, from 1 to 10 cm, with functional results similar to autologous nerve transplantation.
Peripheral nerves are the communication structures that connect the brain and spinal cord to the rest of our body. Thus, peripheral nerve damage can result in a lack of communication between the brain and various organs and muscles. Unfortunately, peripheral nerves are relatively vulnerable and around the world more than one million people suffer from peripheral nerve damage each year. It is highly likely that such damage will be life-changing.
Today, the ‘gold standard’ treatment for long nerve defects involves the surgical transplantation of nerve autografts. This procedure presents various limitations, as it requires very high surgical skills along with the risks of donor site morbidity, a limited amount of donor tissue, and esthetic problems to the patient. To issue the mentioned limitations artificial nerve grafts (ANGs) can be used, but currently in the clinic they can't achieve the functional "gold standard" results, and usually suitable for the treatment of nerve defects up to 2cm, while most of the injuries involve larger gaps.
In re:pair, we are taking an innovative combinatorial approach to solve those problems. We develop an off-the-shelf 3D artificial hydrogel-based graft which mimics the natural topography of nerves. This method has been proven to help the spontaneously-regenerating axons rapidly take the right path needed for the repair of long-distance nerve defects.
Together, we aim to harness our knowledge to help people with peripheral nerve injuries. We are collaborating with world top neurosurgeons and aided by experienced mentors through the UnBox program at Bar-Ilan University to create global impact and make our vision come true.
Prof. Orit Shefi
Orit has 15+ years of experience in the field of neuronal growth. She is the head of Neuro-engineering and Regeneration Laboratory in Bar Ilan University and has an extensive experience in developing 3D platforms for neural engineering, regeneration and drug delivery.
Sharon has 7+ years in the field on neuronal regeneration. He did his PhD at the Neuro-engineering research lab led by Prof. Orit Shefi and has an extensive experience in developing tools for neural regeneration and tissue engineering applications.
Dr. Sharon Cohen