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P S Binder, M E Rock, K C Schmidt, J A Anderson; High-voltage electron microscopy of normal human cornea.. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 1991;32(8):2234-2243.
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Conventional transmission electron microscopy (CTEM) was compared with high-voltage electron microscopy (HVEM) on 11 normal human corneas (age range, 30 weeks of gestation to 92 yr). Epithelial anchoring fibrils were noted between the basal epithelial cells and Bowman's layer (BL) as previously reported. Parallel pairs of fibers, 27.5 nm in diameter, were observed crossing into the anterior stromal lamellae from BL; their termination sites, however, were not identified. The lateral termination of BL was marked by the presence of a keratocyte lying directly below the end of the multilaminar basal lamina. In this region, BL tapered and became interwoven with the scleral collagen fibrils in the substantia propria. The HVEM accentuated the orthogonal relationship of collagen bundles apparently emerging from the stromal keratocytes. The posterior corneal stroma appeared to be attached to the anterior surface of Descemet's membrane (DM) by fibers 22.3 nm in diameter that were associated frequently with a dense amorphous material. In the periphery, DM tapered to a thin strand, 0.5 microns in thickness, containing cable-like strands of banded collagen. The posterior nonbanded portion continued laterally and anteriorly in a series of folds between the fibrous collagen sheets of the anterior trabecular meshwork. In addition, HVEM enhanced the visibility of extracellular matrix interactions in the lateral terminations of BL and DM, attachment fibers from BL to the stroma and from the stroma to DM, and keratocyte and collagen fiber orientations not seen easily by CTEM.
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