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Marion K Gordon, Rita A. A. Hahn, Peihong Zhou; Expressionof Mucin 5AC in Corneas at 28 days after Ocular Sulfur Mustard Exposure. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2018;59(9):4377.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
To investigate in a small scale study whether the expression of mucin 5AC at 28 days after ocular SM exposure correlates with better healing if eyes receive Restasis treatment rather than no therapy.
Fifteen rabbits were used in a sulfur mustard exposure at MRI Global. Three 3 rabbits served as Restasis controls, receiving one drop of the agent in their right eye repeated at 12 hr intervals for the 28 days of the experiment. The right eyes of the remaining 12 were exposed to 0.4 µL neat SM. The left eyes of these 12 served as negative controls. Six of the rabbits received no therapy, and the other six received a drop of the Restasis at 12 hr after the exposure and another at 24 hr after the exposure. This therapy regimen was continued for the 28 days of the study. Left eyes served as controls. All eyes were photographed at days 1, 3, 7, 14, 16, 21, and 28. At 28 days, animals were sacrificed, eyes were enucleated. After dissecting out the corneas without their scleral rims, they were placed in OCT medium and frozen for subsequent analyses.
Unexposed and mustard exposed corneas were sectioned, then MUC 5AC antibody was applied to the sections to evaluate whether the mucin was present. MUC5AC was only found at the very exterior edges of unexposed corneas. However, in mustard exposed eyes, MUC5AC immunofluorescence was observed in the cornea proper, suggesting the initiation of conjunctivalization.
It has been demonstrated that nerve growth factor treatment of corneas can promote corneal limbal cells to differentiate into conjunctival goblet cells (Li, Wang and Li, Mol. Vis. 16:2739-2744, 2010). Our results indicate that ocular mustard exposure may initiate a similar or related adverse consequence to the eye. This “conjunctivalization” of the cornea may possibly explaining some of the delayed adverse eye phenotypes observed after in vivo ocular mustard exposure.
This is an abstract that was submitted for the 2018 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Honolulu, Hawaii, April 29 - May 3, 2018.
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