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Miguel Gonzalez-Andrades, Juan de la Cruz Cardona, Ana Maria Ionescu, Antonio Campos, Maria del Mar Perez, Miguel Alaminos; Generation of Bioengineered Corneas with Decellularized Xenografts and Human Keratocytes. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2011;52(1):215-222. doi: 10.1167/iovs.09-4773.
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Purpose. Decellularization of animal corneas is a promising method for the development of artificial human corneas by tissue engineering. In this study, two different decellularization protocols were evaluated to determine which one is able to best preserve the histologic structure, composition, and optical behavior of decellularized porcine corneas. Then, these corneas were recellularized with human keratocytes to obtain a partial human corneal substitute.
Methods. Two different decellularization protocols were applied, using NaCl and SDS, to determine which one is able to best preserve the histologic structure, composition, and optical behavior of the decellularized corneas. Then, those decellularized corneas that showed the most appropriate results were recellularized with human keratocytes and evaluated at the histologic, biochemical, and optical levels for use in regenerative medicine.
Results. The results showed that 1.5 M NaCl treatment of porcine corneas is able to generate an acellular corneal stroma with adequate histologic and optical properties and that human keratocytes are able to penetrate and spread within this scaffold with proper levels of cell differentiation. In contrast, 0.1% SDS treatment of porcine corneas resulted in high levels of fibril disorganization and poor optical behavior of these corneas.
Conclusions. In conclusion, the authors suggest that the decellularization of animal corneas with 1.5 M NaCl represents a useful method for the development of human bioengineered corneas with therapeutic potential.
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