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C.H. Yuen, R.L. Williams, M. Batterbury, B.J. Moriarty, I. Grierson; Do Surface Properties of a Material Affect the Development of Posterior Capsular Opacification? . Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2003;44(13):287.
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Purpose: To determine whether cellular settlement onto a surface can be significantly altered by changing surface properties. Methods: Using bovine lens epithelial cells (BLECs, passage 5 or less) in tissue culture, monolayer models were set up to study cellular adhesion onto three different types of materials. The materials used were polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA), silicone and a hydrophobic acrylic polymer (AcrySof, Alcon). These were chosen because of their everyday clinical applications in the guises of intraocular lenses (IOLs). The materials underwent a low-energy gas plasma treatment (nitrogen or air) which rendered the surfaces more hydrophilic. This treatment offers a controllable means of chemically modifying surfaces without affecting the bulk properties. This change was measured by dynamic contact angle measurements (DCA). The treated materials and controls were placed in 24-well plates. BLECs were seeded into these wells, at a density of 30,000 cells per well. The culture medium used was Dulbecco’s Modified Essential Medium (DMEM) with 20% foetal calf serum. Serial photographs were taken to demonstrate cell settlement at days 1, 3, 7 and 14. The plates were then fixed and stained with haematoxylin. Results: The gas plasma treatment significantly increased the hydrophilicity of surfaces (Table 1). BLECs settled faster and better on hydrophilic surfaces throughout . In addition, the cellular morphology was different. While the hydrophilic surfaces developed a confluent layer of cuboidal BLECs within 1 week, the relatively hydrophobic surfaces had sparse populations of spindle-shaped cells. Conclusions: In addition to the recognised factors of IOL edge design and choice of materials, the authors believe that surface properties may have a beneficial effect in combating posterior capsular opacification by means of altering cellular adhesion and migration. Further in vitro models are underway. Table 1. Dynamic contact angle (DCA) measurements to determine change in hydrophobic properties View OriginalDownload SlideView OriginalDownload Slide
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