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Z. Li, D. Brake, C. W. Smith; High-Fat Diet Delays Mouse Corneal Epithelial Wound Healing. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2009;50(13):6287.
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This study tested the hypothesis that a high-fat diet impairs corneal wound healing and inflammation.
Female C57BL/6H mice were fed either a standard chow diet or a diet high in saturated fatty acids (21% by weight milk fat). After 6 weeks, a corneal wound was made by removal of a 2-mm diameter area of central corneal epithelium. Re-epithelialization, epithelial proliferation, γΔ T cell and neutrophil emigration were evaluated at different time points after wounding.
Though mice on the high fat diet were not significantly obese, γΔ T cell density in the epithelial cell layer of ocular surface, including conjunctiva and corneal limbus, was significantly higher (>3 times, p<0.001) than that of mice on standard chow diet. In addition, animals on the high fat diet presented delayed wound re-epithelialization (20% reduction, p<0.05), decreased epithelial cell proliferation (~50% reduction, p<0.01), and blunted neutrophil infiltration (~40% reduction p<0.01). While γΔ T cells increase significantly in lean mice following corneal abrasion, their number did not significantly change after corneal abrasion in the mice on the high fat diet.
These findings indicate that a short-term high-fat diet changed the distribution of γΔ T cells on the ocular surface and exerts negative effects on corneal epithelial wound healing, with dysregulation of the inflammatory processes.
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