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Herbert v. Essen, Chien C. Lin, Horng J. Lai, Gré P. Luyten, Martine J. Jager; A Fish Scale Derived Corneal Inlay - Evaluation Of Experimental Methods. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2011;52(14):4088.
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To evaluate the biocompatibility of a fish-scale derived corneal inlay, using a rat animal model. A 300 µm thick, decellularized and decalcified fish scale-derived matrix has been developed as an alternative for the use of human tissue to replace damaged corneas. Prior to use in humans, it is essential to determine its behaviour and biocompatibility with corneal tissue.
A 300 µm thick, fish scale-derived, matrix was implanted into the corneas of Fischer 344 male rats. Rats were anesthetized with isufluorane, oxybuprocaine and marcaine. Implants were used as an Anterior Lamellar Keratoplasty (ALK), attached with fibrin glue, or were placed into an intralamellar corneal pocket, closed with two 10/0 nylon sutures. Discomfort, attachment of the implant, corneal transparency, epithelial damage and inflammation parameters were observed in vivo during 7 days. Groups consisted of five rats. In addition, a group will be tested using 10.0 sutures.
When fibrin glue was used for fixation of the implant, we noticed good fixation directly postoperatively, but loosening of the edges after one day and complete release of the implant with signs of discomfort after two days. Rats receiving a pocket implantation showed no discomfort, had clear transparency of the cornea and implant, no inflammation and minimal epithelial damage at the site of suturing.
While the application of fibrin glue shortens operation time, it did not fixate the implant adequately due to mechanical tension. On the other hand, implantation of the inlay in an intralamellar corneal pocket showed excellent results and can be used to analyze biocompatibility of the corneal inlay. Technical adjustments will be made to the matrix to allow a better fit on the corneal surface for use in ALK.
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