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Fergus F. Wong, Jay M. Stewart; Posterior Scleral Stiffening by Exogenous Chemical Collagen Crosslinking. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2011;52(14):5198.
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To assess the biomechanical effect of treating porcine sclera with methylglyoxal, a collagen crosslinking agent.
Whole porcine eyes were immersed in a 1% methylglyoxal in PBS solution for 30 minutes (Group 1) or 120 minutes (Group 2); contralateral eyes were treated in PBS only. A pilot study of localized treatment was also performed by treating a small circular region (9mm diameter) of the posterior eye for 30 minutes. Following treatment, the globe was pressurized from 0 to 10 times normal IOP for ten cycles; strain markers adhered to the posterior eye were tracked via an optical system to quantify biaxial strains.
In Groups 1 and 2, both methylglyoxal treatments produced similar, statistically significant stiffening effects; peak strains were decreased and Young’s moduli increased in both directions in treated eyes, compared to controls. Furthermore, the stiffening effect of the localized treatment was comparable to that of Groups 1 and 2.
Thirty minutes of methylglyoxal treatment is sufficient to achieve the maximum possible stiffening of sclera within a reasonably short timespan. Furthermore, a thirty minute treatment localized at the posterior pole appears to be a viable procedure that could be used to stiffen posterior sclera in vivo.
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