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Lars Bräuer, Christian Kindler, Kristin Jäger, Saadettin Sel, Bernhard Nölle, Uwe Pleyer, Matthias Ochs, Friedrich P. Paulsen; Detection of Surfactant Proteins A and D in Human Tear Fluid and the Human Lacrimal System. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2007;48(9):3945-3953. doi: 10.1167/iovs.07-0201.
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purpose. To evaluate the expression and presence of surfactant protein (SP) A and SP-D in the lacrimal apparatus, at the ocular surface, and in tears in healthy and pathologic states.
methods. Expression of mRNA for SP-A and SP-D was analyzed by RT-PCR in healthy lacrimal gland, conjunctiva, cornea, and nasolacrimal ducts as well as in a spontaneously immortalized conjunctival epithelial cell line (HCjE; IOBA-NHC) and a SV40-transfected cornea epithelial cell line (HCE). Deposition of SP-A and SP-D was determined by Western blot, dot blot, and immunohistochemistry in healthy tissues, in tears, aqueous humor, and in sections of different corneal abnormalities (keratoconus, herpetic keratitis, and Staphylococcus aureus–based ulceration). Cell lines were stimulated with different cytokines and bacterial components and were analyzed for the production of SP-A and SP-D by immunohistochemistry.
results. The presence of SP-A and SP-D on mRNA and protein levels was evidenced in healthy lacrimal gland, conjunctiva, cornea, and nasolacrimal duct samples. Moreover, both proteins were present in tears but were absent in aqueous humor. Immunohistochemistry revealed the production of both peptides by acinar epithelial cells of the lacrimal gland and epithelial cells of the conjunctiva and nasolacrimal ducts, whereas goblet cells revealed no reactivity. Healthy cornea revealed weak reactivity on epithelial surface cells only. In contrast, SP-A and SP-D revealed strong reactivity in patients with herpetic keratitis and corneal ulceration surrounding lesions and in several immigrated defense cells. Reactivity in corneal epithelium and endothelium was also seen in patients with keratoconus. Cell culture experiments revealed that SP-A and SP-D are produced by both epithelial cell lines without and after stimulation with cytokines and bacterial components.
conclusions. These results show that SP-A, in addition to SP-D, is a peptide of the tear film. Based on the known direct and indirect antimicrobial effects of collectins, the surfactant-associated proteins A and D seem to be involved in several ocular surface diseases.
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