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  • Prevention of Corneal Myofibroblastic Differentiation In Vitro Using a Biomimetic ECM Hydrogel for Corneal Tissue Regeneration.

Prevention of Corneal Myofibroblastic Differentiation In Vitro Using a Biomimetic ECM Hydrogel for Corneal Tissue Regeneration.

ACS applied bio materials (2022-01-12)
Shibu Chameettachal, Deeksha Prasad, Yash Parekh, Sayan Basu, Vivek Singh, Kiran Kumar Bokara, Falguni Pati
ABSTRACT

Corneal scarring is one of the major causes of blindness, affecting millions worldwide. Despite recent advancements in surgical strategies, there is an unmet need for a clinically feasible material and methods to prevent scarring following corneal injury. In this study, we report the potential utility of a hydrogel derived from cadaveric animal corneas, using a decellularized corneal matrix hydrogel (abbreviated as dCMH), which is prepared by a simple method. This hydrogel is easily injectable, biocompatible, and has the ability to maintain good shape-retention properties at 37 °C, which make it suitable for in vivo applications. Furthermore, our gene expression studies and immunofluorescence studies indicate that dCMH maintains the morphology and function of keratocytes in vitro and prevents their transdifferentiation to myofibroblasts. From the above results, it is evident that dCMH maintains the keratocytes with the ability to regenerate the corneal defect without scar. We thus suggest a simple yet effective approach for corneal tissue decellularization and that dCMH can be a promising material for prophylaxis against blinding scar formation in an injured cornea.

MATERIALS
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Sigma-Aldrich
Pepsin from porcine gastric mucosa, powder, ≥400 units/mg protein