June 2017
Volume 58, Issue 8
Open Access
ARVO Annual Meeting Abstract  |   June 2017
BIOcular™ Dressings for Corneal Repair
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Lauren A Costella
    Biomedical Technologies Group, Luna Innovations, Charlottesville, Virginia, United States
  • Matthew Patterson
    Biomedical Technologies Group, Luna Innovations, Charlottesville, Virginia, United States
  • Robert Redmond
    Wellman Center for Photomedicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, United States
  • Andrew Eiseman
    Storm Eye Institute, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina, United States
  • Christopher Tison
    Biomedical Technologies Group, Luna Innovations, Charlottesville, Virginia, United States
  • Footnotes
    Commercial Relationships   Lauren Costella, Luna Innovations (E); Matthew Patterson, Luna Innovations (E); Robert Redmond, Luna Innovations (C); Andrew Eiseman, Luna Innovations (C); Christopher Tison, Luna Innovations (E)
  • Footnotes
    Support  Army Contracts W81XWH-14-C-0028, W81XWH-16-C-0010, W81XWH-15-C-0139
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science June 2017, Vol.58, 157. doi:
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    • Get Citation

      Lauren A Costella, Matthew Patterson, Robert Redmond, Andrew Eiseman, Christopher Tison; BIOcular™ Dressings for Corneal Repair. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2017;58(8):157.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Purpose : The use of amniotic membrane to heal corneal defects is associated with a host of storage, processing, and testing expenses. Luna is developing an ocular biomaterial (BIOcular™) that mimics these healing properties using a nanofiber-reinforced hydrogel applied without sutures. The optical, mechanical, and biological properties of BIOcular™ prototypes were evaluated with in vitro and ex vivo techniques.

Methods : Luna developed an electrospraying/spinning system for fabrication. Nanofiber alignment was evaluated using the FibrilTool ImageJ plugin and SEM images. Primary human corneal epithelial cells (HCECs) were cultured for cytocompatibility testing using the lactate dehydrogenase assay. UV-Vis spectroscopy was used to quantify sample transparency at 550 nm, and an Abbe Refractometer was used to determine the refractive index. Sample degradation was monitored in simulated tear solution. Photochemical tissue bonding (PTB) using an Iridix OcuLight GL laser (532 nm, 0.25 W) was investigated for sutureless adhesion using 0.01-0.1% rose bengal.

Results : Luna’s unique dual electrospinning/spraying setup was used for pilot-scale production. Cytocompatibility tests with HCECs indicated dressings were nontoxic as compared to low density polyethylene positive controls. UV-Vis spectroscopy showed >85% transmission of 550 nm light for a hydrated dressing, and the refractive index was 1.335. Using image processing of SEM images, Luna confirmed alignment of the nanofiber-reinforcing layers and demonstrated control over the degree of alignment during production, with final dressings having an anisotropy value >0.2. Luna utilized 532 nm light to adhere the dressing to the surface of an excised rabbit eyeball using PTB with rose bengal. Rose bengal was incorporated in the hydrogel component of the dressing and achieved adhesion to the surface with no cytotoxic effect to HCECs at 0.05% wt/vol. Luna demonstrated controlled degradation (5 min to 4 wk) in simulated ocular fluids by altering hydrogel crosslinking.

Conclusions : Luna successfully demonstrated the feasibility of this ocular biomaterial to stimulate corneal surface healing. The dressing was found to have a refractive index of 1.335, transmission of 85% for 550 nm light, and to be cytocompatible with primary human corneal epithelial cells. In vivo studies are ongoing in a rabbit model for corneal defects to demonstrate improved healing and establish photochemical tissue bonding in vivo.

This is an abstract that was submitted for the 2017 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Baltimore, MD, May 7-11, 2017.


Luna’s BIOcular™ dressing

Luna’s BIOcular™ dressing


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